I currently have two dogs that I love very much. I grew up with lots of pets: dogs, cats, chickens, turkeys, horses, fish, birds, peacocks, turtles, rabbits, etc. Even as a young child I always loved animals. Looking back at old photos I almost always had a chicken in my arms. And no we did not eat any of these pets. As I got older I wanted my own pet which is how we ended up with cats. My first cat didn’t like me very much and eventually got out and ran away. With my second cat my brother developed allergies and we had to give her away. I convinced my parents to try a third cat since my brother wasn’t allergic to the first cat but of course he was still allergic to cats. I’m sure they only agreed knowing that the cat already had another home and to convince me that we can’t have cats. I felt really lonely as a kid and still really wanted a pet of my own. We were constantly going on trips for my brothers competitions and I was always so bored. I thought it would be great if I had my own dog that I could bring with us on the trips to hang out with. On one of our trips we stopped at a gas station that had a box of free puppies. I begged my parents to let me have one. My dad said that if they were still there on the way back that we could take one home. I was so excited. It was all I could think or talk about the whole weekend. I wouldn’t shut up the whole drive home and was constantly asking how much further until the gas station with the puppies. Time kept going by and it seemed like forever. I kept saying that I felt like we should’ve been there by now. My dad finally told me that they decided to take a different route home. Obviously I was crushed but also confused. Why hadn’t they just been honest with me and told me the truth? Why were they getting my hopes up just to crush them? I doubt the puppies would’ve even still been there so even to this day it upsets me how things were handled. I cried the rest of the way home. Years later I did eventually get my dog. My mom went and pick her out of a shelter and surprised me after school. I absolutely loved her. She was my best friend and meant everything to me. I still miss her to this day. I think about how much more love and care I wish I had given her. I gave her everything I had but it never seemed to be enough; she deserved so much more than I had to give. She was there when I started dating my husband, she was there when I’d cry in my room, she was there to keep me company on family trips, she was there for me through middle school, high school, undergrad, and when I got married. Most importantly, she was there for me when my family was falling apart and my dad was drinking. I will always love her, I will always miss her and I will always be thankful for all the love and support that she gave to me. I love the dogs I have now but there will always be a special spot in my heart for my little beagle mix.