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She Carried Me, Then I Carried Her
by: Melissa Knapp, Source Unknown

She came into my life when I was eight years old. My dad found her at work. She was a stray and starving. He took one look at her, and said "Seems like you could use a good home." He opened up the door to his pickup and she jumped in. Her tailed wagged all the way.

I was still at school, when dad arrived home with the puppy. Mom and dad fed her and gave her a bath. This would be my first pet.

I had always wanted a dog. My parents told me when I was old enough and responsible, I could have one. Well I guess they figured the time was right.

I hopped off the bus, not knowing what awaited inside for me. I walked through the door, and to my surprise a white and black puppy with a red bow stuck to her head, greeted me with many many puppy kisses. A very special friendship was born that day.

Now she needed a name. My older brother laughed at her and said her tail was deformed. It doesn't wag its tail back and forth, it goes in a circle. He motions his finger around his ear, and says "She's squirrely" Thus my puppy, Squirrely got her name.

She was a smart dog. I taught her to play hide and seek. We would play for hours, spending our days learning and growing together.

Eleven years we were together, best of friends. Arthritis and old age set in on her. My parents knew what had to be done, but they stood back and let me find and make the decision myself.

She was suffering so much and the medicine didn't seem to help anymore. She could barely walk. I looked into those deep brown eyes and realized it was time to let he go.

I carried her into the vet's office, placed her on the table. Squirrely leaned her head forward, gave a lick to my hand. As if to say she understood, and stay strong. Her tail was wagging in that circle as it always did.

The vet gave her a sedative first, for the final shot was given on her front paw, and that was painful. She first went to sleep, but her tail still wagged. Then the vet asked before giving the final shot, "Are you sure?" With a heavy heart and tear filled eye's, I nodded yes.

The final shot was given. My eye's fixed upon her wagging tail. A matter of seconds and it stopped. The vet listened for a heart beat, and said "It's over" I wrapped her up in her favorite blanket, and carried her out.

I took her home and buried her in the pasture, where she loved playing, and chasing rabbits. It was the hardest thing I have ever done.

I didn't go back to her grave for many years, but recently I went. Growing on her grave was a single wild flower. I sat and watched it swaying in the wind, and realized that it was swaying in a circle, just like Squirrely. I know now that, that special friend will be with me always.

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