“It came to me that every time I lose a dog, they take a piece of my heart with them, and every new dog who comes into my life gifts me with a piece of their heart.  If I live long enough, all the components of my heart will be dog, and I will become as generous and loving as they are.” ~Anonymous

Baby Fritz, he is on the far right.
One year ago today, I lost Fritz.  I sound like a broken record when I talk about how much I love him and how important he was in my life.  Not everyone will understand this, many people will say, “he was just a dog.”  That’s OK.  Nobody really has to understand it but me.

Today, Andy and I want to remember Fritz for the wonderful dog that he was.  Though we are still processing how unfair everything was, how unfair it was that he was taken from us so young, and how we are still working through our anger over the whole situation, we know that Fritz did not want to leave us and we know that we loved him truly and fully while he was in our lives.  I don’t know how anyone could have loved him more.

Fritz put up with so much…
When we first picked Fritz up, he was so tiny it was amazing.  We looked down at him in the car and decided he looked like a little Fritz.


He became the center of my world.  We brought him everywhere with us.  Instead of a pet, he was our son.

Hiking in northern Minnesota.
He was our first dog and he crawled his way into our hearts in no time.

Fritz was our son long before we decided not to have children.  The amount of love I felt for him was enough to satisfy any of my mothering needs.

Intermediate class graduation.
He taught me how deeply I could love.

Nap time in the sun.

Fritz and Piper at the cabin.

Bathroom Fritz, he had to come everywhere.

The choices we made revolved around what would make Fritz happy.  We brought him on vacations with us, to family dinners, to holiday celebrations.


He was there for my college graduation photos.
Fritz didn’t really like kids (understatement), he didn’t like their laughter or when they ran around, or rode their bikes.  He also hated crows.  He hated the intro song from the TV show “Weeds.”  He hated the intro to “Trailer Park Boys.”  He didn’t like it when anyone ran on TV.  He barked at animals on TV.  He was a picky little dude.


He loved his friends and family.

With auntie KR

With auntie Katie

Watching TV with grandpa
Both of our families quickly learned how much Fritz meant to us.

Fritz took over the spot next to my dad in his chair in their living room.

Andy’s dad bought him his awesome antlers for Christmas and had the regular tradition of sitting with him on his lap after we ate dinner.  Fritz would walk up to his chair and wait to be picked up so he could sit with him.


We took Fritz up north hunting with us.


We took him out in the woods and we went four-wheeling together (he rode with me).


We took him swimming, out on the boat, and tubing with us.  I wish I had a picture of him riding on the tube with me!  If I was in the water, he was worried about me.  We’d put his lifejacket on, set him on top of another lifejacket, and take him swimming in the middle of the lake.  Then we’d get onto a tube and take slow rides around the lake—he would crouch down on the tube beneath me.


He wasn’t much of a swimmer (he could, he just didn’t like it).  He loved to play in shallow water, chasing rocks that we would throw in.

At the dog park, waiting for another rock.
We took him shopping with us.


We took him on camping trips.

Snoozing while we packed up from camping.

In the boat for fishing.
He could be found sleeping almost anywhere in the house.



Sleeping with our old cat Cookie.

During a dinner party.

Back of the couch.

With Piper on the couch.
I lost my best friend, my son, and the love of my life.  I would like to say that it gets easier with time and maybe that’s true to some degree.  But I really believe I am just better at managing the pain of losing him; it’s always there but I’ve learned to live with the constant ache.


Nothing will replace him and my love for him will never be matched.  Sure, I love Theo but it is nowhere near the same.  I lost my one true love in the world, the reason that I wanted to make the world a better place.  I lost my heart.





i carry your heart with me( i carry it in

my heart) i am never without it(anywhere

i go you go, my dear, and whatever is done

by only me is your doing, my darling)

i fear

no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet)i want

no world(for you are my world, my true)

and it is you are whatever a moon has always meant

and whatever a sun will always sing is you

here is the deepest secret nobody knows

(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud

and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows

higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)

and this is the wonder that is keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)

~e.e. cummings


I will always love him.  Bug, bugger, boog, boogie, booger, bud, buddy, Fritz, Fritzopher, Silly puddy.  My little dude.  Thank you for showing me how deeply I could love.  Thank you for showing me love in return.  Thank you for the wonderful years.  I am sorry we failed you.  I am sorry you aren’t with us now.  I’m sorry.  I love you.


Rest in peace.

Fritz McLaughlin 7/7/2009-6/25/2015


8 Comments Add yours

  1. Jackie says:

    This made me cry. 😦 Almost as much as I did the day you lost Fritz. We tried so hard to help him. I’m so sorry. The important thing now is that he will always be in your heart. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Jackie:) you’re right, he will always be with me.


  2. Emily says:

    This is a beautiful, touching post. I just found your blog recently so don’t know how Fritz left you, but no matter how it happened, I feel your pain deeply. As a fellow dog lover with no children, I know just how much our fur sons and daughters have our hearts. Thank you for sharing your wonderful memories of your gorgeous Fritz. He was obviously a very special being. Tears in my eyes as I write this…RIP Fritz. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for the kind words! It was a very painful loss and it is nice to hear from a fellow pet lover. Thank you for reaching out.


  3. Rhonda Habel says:

    What a beautiful tribute. I’m so sorry for your loss. -fellow dog lover

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your kindness:) Fritz was a special little dude.


  4. jaimishep says:

    Hello again.

    I’m also reading this with tears streaming down my face and a crushing pain in my heart . I’ve lost many pets in my life and can relate. Our two current pets (fur-babies) are my 1st pets as an adult and I can’t fathom losing them. I’m constantly worrying about them and finding ways to make their lives better.
    I’ve said it before, but I’m so terribly sorry for your loss. The depth of your sorrow will match the depth of your love – so I know this will continue to be difficult. Please know that many of us understand and send the best thoughts and support your way.


    1. Thank you for your kindness!


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