A Tribute To My Furry Face Best Friend. July 27, 2010 – November 18, 2021

Miss Z at 6 weeks old.

On July 27, 2010, a new life came into the world.  It was small, warm, furry, helpless.  Seven weeks later, it was at an adoption shelter.  All that the staff knew was that the furry little girl’s mom was a Siberian Huskie.  (We would later discover that her dad was a Boxer.)  She had a brother and sister and her sister was also up for adoption, but when I played with her, she wasn’t interested.   When I played with the puppy the shelter had named “Kim”,  I asked her to give me a sign if she wanted to come home with me.  She jumped on me and kissed me one time on the face.  That was my sign.   I took her home.  On November 18, 2021, as she heard comforting and apologetic words, she again gave a kiss and went to her home on the Rainbow Bridge. 


Miss Z at 7 weeks old. Her first bath. I could hold her in one hand.

Zenamarie (also known as “Miss Z), was a playful, joyful dog.   Her mix combo, called Boxsky was more than a handful.  She was inquisitive, and as you can see in the above photo, she looked as if she had all wisdom. 

Miss Z learned very quickly.  She was totally housebroken in 3 weeks.  Most times, she was very obedient – always obedient when it came to sit, lay, high-five, shake paw.  She wasn’t so obedient when it came to not barking.  



Some mornings, I opened my eyes to see this stare-down.

As the years went by, her black and brown muzzle turned white.  It’s strange seeing your furry face age.  She hadn’t slowed down her playfulness until she was 5-years old, only reducing it to about 10 minute increments.  The life span for her breed mix is 10 years.  I was blessed with having her in my life for an additional year.

Miss Z loved her backyard.  She played ball in her yard.  She chased squirrels in her yard.  She chased rabbits in her yard.  She pounced on a ground hog in her yard — and she was skunked in her yard. Once, she stopped a burglar of my neighbor’s house who, hearing her bark in his direction, left the television he was stealing on the ground and hauled ass.

Last year she developed fatty masses.  They seem to all appear overnight.  A trip to the Vet, and they were tested, coming back fatty masses — nothing to worry about.  I did begin giving her a teaspoon of olive oil daily and they began to shrink.

From the time I adopted her, Miss Z had a fantastic Vet.  He was also doctor to her predecessor, Sheba.  Because of Covid-19,  his office was only taking emergencies.   In case you don’t know, Huskies and some mixed with that breed have very fast growing nails.  I’ve never been one able to trim any of my dogs’ nails and always took them to a groomer or the vet.   I took her to another vet whose office was open for non-emergency visits. 

Earlier this year, Miss Z began licking her bottom as if she was trying to get something out of it.  In May, my son took her to the substitute Vet for me.  She had a tumor on her anal gland on the right side.  Two weeks later, she had surgery to remove the tumor.  A week after that, the pathology report returned that it was cancerous, and there was a small amount of cancer cells at the edge of the tumor.    It was explained to me that it meant there was potential that the cancer cells might have spread. 

In August, she was taken for her follow-up and the tumor was back.   She had another surgery.   In October, she went for her follow-up and the Vet said that the tumor was back; about the size of a lady bug.  The Vet gave us pain pills for her.  He would not give us a prognosis.

Three weeks ago, Miss Z stopped eating her food.  She would eat our food that we shared with her, and her treats.  She has a Kong and she played with it, eating whatever I stuffed into it.   I also noticed that she was losing weight.  She threw up phlegm.  Her gait was unsteady.  I was vigilant, even sleeping downstairs so she wouldn’t make effort to get up the stairs.

Tuesday morning, she ate a hamburger.  Then, she refused her treats, refused her food, and refused our food.  She would lay down and in 10 minutes, adjust her position with a groan.  Fortunately, her original Vet was back open for full-service and in she went to see him on Wednesday morning.  That Vet is also experienced in pathology and has microscopes and a digital x-ray machine.  He also got the report from the previous Vet who performed the surgeries.

It was bad news.  Her liver and spleen were swollen.  There was a spot above her colon, and a spot on one lung.  Her white blood cell count was high, and her red blood cells were not mature.  The Vet’s opinion was that her bone marrow was not making enough blood cells and that could be indication that the cancer was in her bones.  He gave her an anti-biotic,  a supplement for her liver, and prescription dog food.  He said that If she ate, she had about 4 months to live.  If she didn’t eat, the time would be shorter.  Mostly, it was her behavior that communicated to me she was suffering.   Wednesday night, she declined more.  Thursday morning, Miss Z could barely move her back legs, which trembled as she tried.  She was declining fast. 

The decision was more than difficult.  Because of my own selfish love for her, I didn’t want to let her go unless it was time.  But, it was time.  She was suffering.  I could not stand to watch her suffer longer.

I am torn, grieving, and miss her so badly.  In about 2 weeks, her ashes will come home.


Miss Z, Zenamarie, at the age of 9.  July 27, 2010 – November 18, 2021. 



Posted on 11/20/2021, in cancer, Happy Place, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 45 Comments.

  1. Hello Xena. I am sorry for your loss. Hard to click the like button on such a heart rending post, but the good memories and love you both shared are worth more than I have words to say. Wishing you the best. Hugs

    Liked by 2 people

    • Scottie,
      Thank you so much. Last night I watched some videos of her and it reminded me why I choose to have another dog. Their life spans are short, so they should have the best life possible. On those videos, she was so happy. I do miss her dearly.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I echo what Scottie said. So sorry for your loss, Xena. It sounds like she gave you a lot of joy.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Brendan,
      Thank you. Yes. It was a joyful relationship. Last night as I began to close the blinds and turn on the outdoor lights, I was reminded how much I talked to her. I used to tell her when I was getting ready to do those things. Sometimes, she would jump on the sofa and look out the window, so I would leave that blind open until she had looked enough. She understood what I was saying. I almost spoke the words out loud last night.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. I’m SO sorry for your loss! There’s no greater loss than a furry friend! My deepest condolences.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your kind words. Going through this is difficult to explain because I know she was suffering and there would be no relief. I think the missing of her is what gets to me most. Thanks again.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. My dearest, ever, forever friend!! I’m so sorry for you loss. A friend like that is a family member. I send live and a tight Boricua hug your way.
    Know I always think about you – 🤗💞🤗

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Two sides to a story

    Aw. Thanks for sharing your doggo’s life story and her rainbow bridge crossing. Many blessings to you as you absorb this loss.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Two sides,
      Thanks for your comforting comment. Today, I gathered her toys and put them in one place, with plans to wash them before packing away. Her diner, (dishes holder) is still in the kitchen. (Almost filled the water dish twice today.) There are some treats and food that I plan to give away but I’m holding on to the rest for the next furry-face, which will probably be this coming Spring.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    From a very dear, dear friend … “Zenamarie (also known as “Miss Z), was a playful, joyful dog.”

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Sending you warm loving safe air hugs, if you want them,

    Liked by 2 people

  8. It is very hard losing a family member, regardless if the member is a human or an animal. I would never get an animal just to get one. I believe in however you treat your human, that is how you should treat your furry friend. You would not want to see a human suffer from the heat in a car, so why should you have to see an animal suffer the same?

    I was tore up when my furry one was put to sleep. I cried and cried at the vet hospital. One thing that kept me going was the fact of her licking my tears before that last shot was given. I knew she was not going to suffer anymore and she will soon be with the Lord God. Does it hurt… oh hell yeah. I think of her all the time. I even dedicated my bowling scores to her.

    Having cancer sucks and that is why I go with FU Cancer. Cancer comes to rid the body and destroy the body. I think it is due to food being different with different ingredients. I am very sorry for your loss. I am sure you were a very good mother to your animal.

    Liked by 2 people

    • CF,
      Thanks for sharing your experience and your kind words. You mentioned about food ingredients. It brought back a memory. I grew up with a German Shepherd Dog, Boxer mix. His dog food was Strong Heart and Alpo. He lived 16 years. It does appear that their live-spans are getting shorter, just as cancer is increasing in humans in the United States. Thanks again for your comment.

      Liked by 1 person

      • CF Morpheus

        No worries… Now, Alpo has added ingredients and I have not heard of Strong Heart.

        Liked by 2 people

        • CF,
          Hahaha. I think that mostly everything, consumable for animals and humans, have added ingredients. Strong Heart was a canned food. They asked to remove the labels and send them to a certain address where they used them to support the Chicago Lighthouse for the Blind. I heard that it i still being made, but distribution is not nationwide.

          Liked by 1 person

  9. Hi Xena- So sorry for the loss of your precious ZenaMarie.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I’m so sorry to read this. So very sorry. It’s always difficult losing a family member.
    I had one like this one and she was a joyful handful.She was part Serbian, Afghanistan, and German shepherd.LOL!
    Yes, their nails grow fast for they are designed so that they can run on ice.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much for your kind words. I bet your dog was absolutely gorgeous! Yeah — even her walks on the sidewalk didn’t help with the fast growing nails and they were also very thick. Yes, they are so happy and joyful when they’re active. If my next dog is that playful, I’ll get it a four-legged playmate. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      • I’m happy you had many wonderful years with her. You are welcome and thanks for the compliment. Nah, side walks do nothing for their nails but sharpen them. I gave up cutting them because their flesh grew deep into the nails and I was always nervous about nipping her. I think it’s best to have two dogs so they can play with each other. At times, my dog ran like she was in the Iditarod. Capable of pulling me down in the snow. I hitched a little wagon to her in the summer and a little sleigh in the winter and let her pull trash to the dumpster. They love to pull things. 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

        • Hitching a little wagon was so cool! Miss Z didn’t run hard, but she did like to pounce. LOL! Seriously, I’m unsure if I can handle 2 large dogs, and I am a big dog person. Oh — and hounds are cool too, but most dig. Overall, I suppose it depends on what is in the shelter when I go, and which one wants to come home with me. I’m waiting until Spring. With our winters, it would be hectic trying to housebreak in snow and below zero temps. Even I don’t want to go outside in that weather unless it’s to get in my car. LOL!

          Liked by 2 people

          • Miss Z sounded like she liked to use “you” for a springboard. 🥳.
            My dog used to run up to me with a flying leaps and then bounce off me, sometime knocking us both down if I didn’t outrun her.

            I had a hound as child. She was the most laid back dog I ever had, How about two medium sized dogs? But I guess its’ like you say, your pet selects you.

            Yes, house training a dog in the winter months can be quite trying. Whatever you select, I’m sure it will be fun and lovable. 🙂

            Liked by 2 people

          • Until she was about a year old, YES, she used me as her springboard. LOL! I suppose she realized that she had gotten larger and stopped. A pounce from her hind legs down could have broken my ribs. But, she pounced on a groundhog once, and a snake. That poor groundhog looked as if it was begging, “Please. Make her stop.” I grabbed her collar and Mr. Groundhog waddled through a hole in the fence, which was intentionally made to allow the rabbits an escape. Thanks for your comments. They bring sunshine.

            Liked by 2 people

          • My girl never did stop using me as a springboard no matter how many times I told her she was too big. The more I protest the bouncier she became.
            My girl was so playful and gentle she never attacked anything. Sometimes squirrels got ridiculous. She was so gentle she helped raised two kittens I brought home.

            Yes, they do bring lots of sunshine. 🙂

            Liked by 2 people

          • Miss Z was gentle with people and other dogs, but not critters that got into her backyard. She was okay with cats that came into the front yard, but she chased them out of the backyard. Her ashes arrived yesterday. The crematorium placed them in a gorgeous urn. I’m still doing the habit stuff, like going to let her out at dust so I can also turn on the backyard lights. I don’t know when or if I’ll stop missing her.

            Liked by 2 people

          • Yes, you will do you and Miss Z’s routine. That’s part of the grieving progress. It make you feel closer to your beloved pet. It gets better but they will always a place in your heart. Right now, don’t try and rush the “stop missing her”. 🌹🌹🌹

            Liked by 2 people

          • Thanks so much for your kind words and advice. Now, I miss her more in the mornings than at any other time. Grief is the price for loving.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Yes, it is the price for loving. 🌹

            Liked by 1 person

  11. Dear Xena, I am so sorry to hear about your loss of a beloved companion, Miss Z. This is such a beautiful tribute.

    I wish there was something I could say to ease your sorrow and broken heart. I know you much it hurts. I lost my beloved companion, Pinto, in July of this year. I still miss him every day. Sending virtual hugs and lot of love to you. 💜 .

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Dear Xena, I am so sorry to hear about your loss of a beloved companion, Miss Z. This is such a beautiful tribute.

    I wish there was something I could say to ease your sorrow and broken heart. I know how much it hurts. I lost my beloved companion, Pinto, in July of this year. I still miss him every day. Sending virtual hugs and lot of love to you. 💜 .


  13. Tribute to Furry, i can understand your feelings. I am also a pet lover.

    Liked by 2 people

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