She was 13 1/2.

She was always there, tag wagging, this silly grin on her face.

She met my wife at the car every day after work.

She was starting to fade.

Then, she was gone.

This past February, I wrote about Molly and Winnie, the two dogs we got when we first moved out to our acreage. They were inseparable and when Winnie passed away, you could tell Molly was sad. She’d lost her sister, her running around partner, her best friend.

This spring and summer, she’d lost her hearing. She didn’t come to greet us as much. She slept a lot more. We knew something was up.

Our youngest was home the last few days for Christmas and Molly perked up for her. But as time went on, she started to fade again. Christmas Day, she was sleeping in the sun, got loved on by myself, my wife, and daughter, and got a few table scraps.

Then, she was gone.

She didn’t come out in the morning, which wasn’t unusual because, she can’t hear me coming out of the house. But when we got home in the afternoon from a walk, she didn’t come out in the afternoon, we got worried. We checked the usual spots where she’d sleep with no luck.

Then, my wife calls out to me as I looked under the porch. There she was and we knew.

We spent the next half our digging a spot next to her sister. We laid down a bed of straw for her, and then said our good byes.

Tear were shed. Big, sad, ugly tears, but yet happy years.

She could hear now. She wasn’t an old dog creaking as she got up anymore, she was a young dog, running with her sister in a field. That was my dream that night. Mollie and Winnie were together, running together in a field, chasing something. They started barking together and I woke up to the echos in my mind. It was quiet that night. I missed the rhythms of their barks. Winnie had this bark that was just one after another. Molly, she had no rhythm what so ever, so much so that it was comical!

Winnie: Bark (1,2) Bark (1,2) Bark (1,2)

Mollie: Bark (1,2) Bark (1) Bark (1,2,3,4) Bark

Anyway, we are no dogless for the first time in 13 years. I’m not sure if we’ll get another one or not. I just don’t know. All I know is that when I go out to the barn, I miss having company. I miss being greet by wagging tails when we drive in.

They are together now and that’s comforting to me. And they’ll live forever in our memories of them.

So long, Molly. So long, Winnie.

Until we met again.