Recently, we had to put one of our family dogs to sleep. I can say this was one of the hardest experiences any of us have ever encountered. Our beloved St. Bernard, "Big Dog", came into our lives 6 years ago when my mom happened across her at the SPCA. She was scared, nervous and was speculated to have come from an abusive home. My mom and dad nurtured her into a healthy, loving and loyal companion and until her last day with us, she never left my mom's side. As much as this post is a tribute to a wonderful dog, it is a reflection on how pets can come into our lives unexpectedly and bring families closer together. Through Big Dog, all of our relationships have grown stronger and closer. She brought a sense of security, love and joy to our lives. A few months ago, when we were told that cancer, the only thing we could do was shower her with love and attention. Our outpouring of love to her was endless and it always be. Though saying goodbye was painful and hard, we are grateful to have had such a wonderful and loving dog.