Maddie looked more than a little blue when I told her.
I’d just discovered the vet she adores has retired.
Saturday we’ll be seeing another man.
I saw it coming last fall in the pained expression each time Doc would lift hefty Maddie up to the examining table.
Yet the pain would always melt once he looked into her soulful eyes.
Doc was a very patient vet.
And a thoughtful one.
He loved all my dogs.
And they loved him.
Doc would dispense sweet treats from the cupboard freely, further cementing those bonds my crew had with him.
His clinic was like a small town shop where everyone knew our names.
Even my voice, when I called.
Like a good neighbor, Doc’s helped me bring 5 healthy and happy dogs home over the years.
And assisted 3 in leaving it, when joy was long gone.
Each duty done with dignity, kindness, and a tear.
My hunch is that my senior girl Maddie’s always been Doc’s favorite, though he’d never admit it.
I know for sure he’s her favorite fellow.
I’m thinking our retirement card will include one classic canine crew photo.
With maybe one very special paw print from his old girl Maddie.
Definitely in blue.