Three weeks ago, we said goodbye to our 'oldest child', Dharma. We got her from the breeder when she was only six weeks old, and she has been a huge part of our family ever since. In fact, she was our 'only child' for a long time. She was a genuinely sweet dog and we never had problems with her chewing on things, etc. When we got Ami four years ago, Dharma adapted and became a big sister right away. She was also a wonderful big sister to Sophia...very protective of her from the start. In fact, Dharma was protective of all of us! When I got my wisdom teeth out umpteen years ago, Dharma knew something was wrong, and would actually bark at my mom when she would get close to me to help take care of me.
We buried her near our house, under a big pear tree, in a box crafted by my dad out of hand-cut cedar. My mom got her a special pillow to rest on, and we included a photo of our entire family. It was a truly difficult decision to help her pass on, but she had developed a mouth tumor that had gotten really aggressive, and she was really no longer comfortable at all. She was also having a hard time eating and drinking. She lived to just one month shy of her 13th birthday. That's pretty good...the average life span for a Bichon Frise is 11 years. So, we feel like we got two extra special years with our sweet girl. So long, sweet Dharma. We will miss you!!!