From A 5th Portion of Chicken Soup for the Soul


We had a basset hound named Rufus. We called him the “ding dong boy” but I don’t know why. He was a very, very sweet soul. He never bit man nor beast. When the vet would cut his toenails too short, making them bleed, he would cry and lick the vet. Mean dogs befriended Rufus and turned nice in his presence.

Rufus died yesterday. He was fourteen.

I went for a walk in the park today. The world felt different. Changed. There was one less sweet soul. There was a missing piece of the puzzle. It wasn’t just my world that was different. It was the whole world . . . everyone’s world. People I passed were unaware of the change. They looked so . . . centered, so normal. They didn’t know the world was different. I felt so small and alone in the knowing.

I know that when I tell clients that I wasn’t in yesterday because my dog died that it will sound small; insignificant. Everyone has a dog die at some point. But somehow it feels like no one has ever . . . or will ever . . . feel like I do today.

Someone said once that love feels like that same kind of . . . exclusivity. Maybe it’s the same. Maybe what I’m feeling is love.

It feels as if I have an aura. And, if that aura is radiating shades of blue there’s a red lightning bolt running through the light blue part . . . clear to the center of my being.

I love you Rufus and bless you. And send you somewhat reluctantly to your new adventure.

Hoping it is filled with fields of green grass, chew bones, all the treats you can eat and strong legs without arthritis to run in the green fields.

Carmen Rutlen

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