I lost a piece of my heart today.

2011-01-31 17.25.47I met my fur baby Winchester almost 14 years ago when he was eight weeks old. I met him in Winchester, TN which is why he got that name. Plus, I liked the idea of a big name for little dog. I remember bringing him home in the car. He peed, pooped and even threw up on me that first day but I didn’t care. He looked like a furry piece of yummy chocolate and I was in love. I was living in Nashville and he was my trusty companion. He was my buddy through moving to Atlanta, through Divorce, Breast Cancer, a new marriage, through the births of two children and the death of my File Nov 11, 4 38 35 PMsweet daddy. He was known to all of my friends as Winnie, Winnie Pooh and Wincocker when Lily couldn’t say his name Winchester.

I have been allergic to dogs since I was a little girl but by golly, I was NOT gonna be allergic to Winnie. He was such a good dog too. He learned as a puppy to ring a bell to let us know when he had to go to the bathroom. He could shake hands and even bow his head to pray when asked. He only barked if someone was at the door. He didn’t like the rain and he loved a peanut butter treat every now and then. He was such a chill doggie and he loved to snuggle on your lap.

I’ve had friends come and go in my life but they all, regardless if they are still in my life or not, knew and loved Winnie and I loved them for that. I’ve had friends who let Winnie stay with them while we were on vacation and they liked that he would crawl under their covers to the foot of their bed. Off the top of my head, thank you Scotty, Casey, Nanny Lauren, Mr. Joel, Mr. Larry and Dale for those sweet sleepovers.Lilydoggie

When my ten year old daughter Lily was attacked by dogs a few years ago, she came home from the hospital and instantly went to him…fearless. She knew he was safe.

Recently he became really, really sick. In some ways, his deterioration reminded me of the last few months of my Dad. Winnie went from being like aFile Nov 11, 4 39 07 PM Benjamin Buttons kind of dog…seemingly getting younger as he got older and then poof…that all changed overnight. My heart has been breaking these last two weeks watching this happen. No one wants to see someone they love suffer. I loved this dog. I did. I loved my Winchester. He lived a long, full life and boy, I am gonna miss him. He was a part of our family. He was a piece of my heart and I lost that piece today. Today, I am sad. Very, very sad.

Rest in peace Winnie, I love you.

XO Surviving Mommy

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17 Comments

  • Marie says:

    I am so sorry that your Winnie passed.

  • Valerie says:

    So sorry for your loss dear one. Its never ready saying goodbye to our sweet furbabues who love us unselfishly. My sweet doxie Savannah was 17 and last Christmas eve we had to make this same decision. Just know what a great life he had with you and how much he was loved and loved back. **big hugs**

  • MaryJo says:

    I am so sorry for the loss of your beloved Winchester. I can only imagine the pain and loss you feel. I have 2 dogs as well and love them more than I ever thought possible. My heart is with you and your family at this terrible time.

  • JR Cake Decorations says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss girl, now he is looking down to you and your family and thank you all for all the love that he received. God bless you all!

  • Susan Stromquist says:

    Cindy,
    I remember when you were with Ray on Star 94, you would tell us funny stories about Winchester. Ray used to poke fun about his name. I am so sorry for your lose. Our pets are true members of the family, they are all unique and so loving. I know you will miss him. I am so sorry! 😥

  • I am sooooo very sorry for your loss, Cindy. I’ve had to go through this three other times in my life, and currently have two aging cats with me — the oldest is 14 and the youngest is turning 10 this month. The loss of our pets is truly the hardest thing we as pet parents have to endure. We love them so intensely during their all too short lifetimes, and we’re convinced that they love us just as intensely too. Which is, perhaps, the reason why we grieve for them so intensely as well. I hope your many pictures and sweet memories of Winchester will carry you and comfort you as you begin adjusting to life without your sweet boy.

  • Roni Gossett says:

    I’m so incredibly sorry for your loss! Winchester is at the Rainbow Bridge running and playing pain free. My Maddie who is 11 yrs old has been diagnosed with massive liver cancer and only has a short time life with me too.

  • Linda says:

    So sorry for you and your family – what a legacy,,,I had NEVER fathomed the concept that a puppy dog could ring a bell and let you know he had to go outside….I love that story and have repeated it often….my heart hurts …

  • Teresa Kick says:

    Cindy I am so sorry to hear about Winchester. I had two dogs that lived to be 15 and 16. The older one got to the point that she was deaf, blind, and could hardly get around. We had to pick her up and carry her outside to do her business. We finally came to the realization that her time was done. It was so hard making that trip to the vet, but they were great and I held and hugged her as she took her last breaths. Even though it was best for her it was so hard. Some people don’t realize that they are family as much as any human ( sometimes better family than the humans) I’ll be thinking of you and I hope my babies are waiting over the Rainbow bridge to great Winnie. Hugs and kisses to you all. I bet this is hard on Lily and Luna too, you’re in my prayers. 😔

  • Cindy Pittman says:

    I am so sorry to hear of you loosing you precious boy. You have me crying just reading. I lost my Oscar (also a Dachshund) 11 years ago and I can still cry if I speak of him too long. I still have three Doxies. Two of them are 14 and one is 12. I know the day is coming when they will all cross Rainbows Bridge and I dread it. Until then, I just love them and appreciate every day I have with them. Hearts heal and another little pup will enter you life one day. A home without a dog is a sad place so you will want another one some day soon. Until then, cherish your memories.

  • Annamarie says:

    Losing a pet is so hard and so many people don’t understand. When I lost Emma two years ago I didn’t think I would ever be able to have another dog. She was that special. Time heals and we now how two wonderful new bullies who don’t replace what we had just bring joy to a space that occupied so much love. I loved Winchester he was such a great little dog.

  • Paula says:

    Cindy I am so sorry for your loss. My heart is breaking today for you and your family. I know how hard it is to loss a member of the family.

  • Meliss Wadsworth says:

    Oh Cindy – what a touching story about your Winchester. Everything you describe and him is exactly the way I feel about my bulldog Millie. She’s 10. Right now she sleeps a lot and still greets me at the door everyday. When the day comes that she doesn’t greet me at the door, I know my time with her may be limited. I know I will miss her badly. Right now I will cherish every day I have with her. Winnie is in a happy place and knows you loved him the most !

  • Fadra says:

    I’m so sorry, Cindy. My pets are a big part of my family and losing one feels like losing a piece of your heart. Sending you love.

  • Lucia says:

    So sorry. RIP Winnie!

  • Olivine Eyes says:

    I’ve experienced pet loss before and it hurts for me to even think about it. Pets are part of the family.

  • Josie Long says:

    I bawled my eye’s out, reading this, and I’m still crying!! Bless your heart, Cindy, Lilly, Eric, and Luna! #RIP Winnie 😭 💔 👼👼👼👼👼👼👼👼

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