Moses is a big, beautiful, 100 pound, cream colored golden retriever.
He has a way of looking at you that melts your heart. He lived with our family for two weeks, until it was determined that he and Kelly couldn't resolve their differences and wouldn't be a good fit for each other. Then he was adopted by his foster mom, Kathy, and found a happy forever home there.
When we had Moses, we often took him to visit my in-laws. He became good friends with my father-in-law, Ed. They just hit it off right away.
Ed had been suffering from COPD for more than a dozen years. This spring, he caught a cold that he was unable to shake off, and with his compromised breathing, he ended up in the hospital, and then home on hospice care. We did everything we could to make him as comfortable as possible. We brought a big hospital bed into the living room, where he could be a part of what was going on. As he grew more ill, he didn't want many visitors. But my husband got the idea that maybe it would be nice if Moses paid him a visit.
We called Kathy and she readily agreed. She gave us the option of a few dates they were free. "We'd better make it tomorrow," I suggested, knowing how Ed had become quite ill.
The next day Moses arrived. Ed had been sleeping most of the last few days, and hadn't even had the energy to eat or communicate. Kathy gave us the leash, and we led Moses over to the bedside. "You have a visitor!" my husband said. "Remember Moses?"
Ed opened his eyes and struggled to move. We helped him sit up, and he stretched out his hand and touched the top of Moses's head. Just like he had all those times before when Moses came to visit. Moses sat as still as could be as Ed stroked his head and neck. For a few moments, I think, the pain and fear disappeared as Moses looked straight into Ed's eyes.
The visit lasted only a few minutes, and Ed fell right back asleep, exhausted.
The next day Ed passed away.
I like to think that the visit gave Ed a wonderful sendoff, a beautiful reminder of the love that was all around him, and that was waiting for him in heaven. For a dog's healing love is powerful.
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