I know parents lose their children and children lose their parents. I know there are deeper cuts and sorer wounds. I know life can be cruelly unfair on the fate stricken. I know that our pampered little dog dying peacefully in the arms of the people she loved the most at the grand age of 17 and a half doesn't compare to all these. But she was part of our family. A family that is, at the moment, feeling loudly incomplete in a house that’s never been so quiet. Our bodies don’t seem to know the news that our brains and hearts are struggling with, so we still walk carefully around the corner she used to sleep by in fear of stepping on her long playful tail. I know she was just a dog to you. But she was so much more to me. I had expected the lack of empathy but I’ve been shocked by the inexistence of sympathy and understanding. We found her when I was 8, she was the best present I have ever received, a present that kept on giving, selflessly. We became four. We grew older, wiser, sillier. We changed schools, universities, jobs, houses, cities and countries. I turned from a child into a teenager into a young adult into an adult. She turned from an adorable yet piranha like puppy with a crazy penchant for chewing, into a chubby adult dog with short legs and a tail that smiled to everyone, into a skinny old lady that would refuse to put a single paw forward unless the whole group was together. She gave us love, happiness and countless slobbery kisses throughout it all. The day we got her was nearly 18 years ago. 18 years that flew by. Today we were left three. We are happy she was so loved until the end, beyond the end… We’re happy that we are alive, well and able to carry her memory. I know I didn't lose a parent or a child and for that I am so so so grateful. I know they say she was ‘just a dog’ but we’re heart broken. I never realised being grieved was a privilege reserved exclusively for the two legged. She will always be a beauty.