It’s been over a month since we said good-bye to Crisco. He was a part of our world for 16.5 years, and even though he was only 6 pounds, he was six thousand pounds of personality and spirit. He ruled the house, well at least up until a few months ago when the new puppy came to our house, not realizing Crisco was King.

By then, Crisco was really showing signs of age and the old pack who knew him as King was gone. Therefore, organic behavior for Albert was certainly to not even remotely recognize Crisco was the alpha. But it was still cute to watch Crisco try to fill that role.

Nonetheless, the last few months before we said good-bye to Crisco were difficult in watching him age, continue to struggle with the onset of dementia, and really spiral down in his quality of life. Banging into walls when he walked, in a home where everything was the same for the 5 years we’ve been here, to watching him struggle to find his food and water, it was all so heartbreaking to watch. And, if you’re reading this and asking the universe “well, why didn’t you do this,” or “you know you could have tried this,” I can assure you we did and tried everything to keep him comfortable in a way that was “him.” I, too, find myself internally asking questions of others when I hear stories like what I just shared, and subconsciously judging. A completely normal response, for sure, however I’m learning to hold my tongue and thoughts as it is easy to judge from sidelines when it’s not yours.

So, with all of that, and knowing how the final few months of his life looked, I am really okay with him being in a better place. His life at the end was not the life he was about. We really did have to have a heart-to-heart talk with ourselves at the end and ask ourselves if we were keeping him here for us, or for him. It was for us, at that point.

Therefore, I am at peace and am okay with his passing. I feel guilty for that sometimes. But it doesn’t mean that I don’t miss him, that I still love him, and that I wish he could have been like he was in his prime. I still have those feelings too.

But I just want to know it’s okay to be “okay.” Because I am.