November 11 1985 —– June 17 1999

BUD came into my life 16 years ago and I can still remember

the excitement I felt like it was yesterday.

HE was going to be my best friend and little did I know just how true that was to be.

He was one of the cutest puppies I had ever seen. Was 10 weeks old a tricolor border collie.

I have to admit that even after reading so much about the intelligence of border collies

Bud’s intelligence amazed me! But there was something more…

this little guy had a compassion about him that really was unexplainable.

I remember once when we were out walking that a women came up to say hi to Bud

and she said that he had such a kind face.

Bud was quickly becoming my whole world.

And I was so proud of him. The bond that developed between us was untouchable.

It was if our mission in life was to take care of each other.

I was at a point in my life where because of bad choices bad relationships

and always being such a poor judge of people that

I started to withdraw in order to avoid being hurt.

The more I withdrew the more my world revolved around Bud.

It wasn’t him and I against the world…it was just him and I!

Outside of work my every waking moment was spent with Bud.

All he ever wanted to do was to please

and all I wanted to do was give him the best life possible.

He taught me the true meaning of the word love,

he taught me how to trust and what it truly meant to be unselfish.

Patience was another.

So for the next 15 years Bud became my whole world.

He never judged the way we humans do.

Bud and I drove to Rhode Island to be with my family for awhile

and shortly after we arrived he wandered off one morning for the first time in his life.

He was 14 years old and the weather was bitter cold that day

and freezing rain had started.

When I called for him to come in he was no where to be seen.

I started to panic because he had never experienced this kind of weather

and he was in unfamiliar territory. Not a sign of him.

My mom and I went out for hours looking and calling for him as the weather got worse.

The thought of him being out there alone and scared

was tearing me apart.

Nightfall came and still no Bud.

I prayed harder than I ever did in my life begging God and ST. Francis

to please protect Bud and help him find his way home.

I waited for morning and called every animal organization in the state

visited the shelters and called to put an ad in the paper. I was sick!!

It was day two !

and I started to lose faith that I would ever see Bud again

and I was having a hard time functioning.

I did not think he would be able to find his way with all the odds against him.

It was now 1:00 IN THE MORNING AND I must have fallen asleep in the chair


I thought I was dreaming. I heard it again and this time it was louder.

I was not dreaming…it was Bud!!!

What exchanged between him and I at that moment is just not explainable.

The only explanation for him finding his way back was that of a miracle.

I felt that I would never be able to repay God and St. Francis for protecting my friend

and showing him the way home.

Two years ago Bud and I moved to Palm Springs.

Shortly after arriving Bud got sick.

He had a serious bout with Pancreatitis

and after three months he was back to himself again.

Pancreatitis has a habit of flaring up again and so it did about 8 months later.

But something was different this time.

Bud was in so much pain that he was looking and pawing at me

as if to ask me to do something to stop the pain.

My heart was breaking because I felt that I knew where this was leading.


Bud was put down on June 17 1999 at 4:30 p.m.



Just before the vet administered the injection Bud turned and looked at me.

For just a second I thought I saw fear in his face and my heart was just torn out.

I very quickly said to him “it’s ok my friend”

and hoped that I could keep it together so he wouldn’t know I was falling apart.

I left the vet’s office with only half of myself. Bud takes the other half with him.

Life as I knew it would never be the same.

Bud was my ‘REASON’ and now that reason is gone.

But it had to be to be the one to suffer because

God only knows that Bud did not deserve it.

And now come the questions that no one can answer

the questions that will torment me until I no longer exist.

Faith can be a very strange thing at a time like this.

I know that Bud was a gift truly from God

and such goodness had to mean that this wasn’t just the end.

Bud had a soul I know he did and I hope that he sits in a happy place.

I need to know he is ok to continue on with at least partial sanity.

I’m not doing a very good job without you Bud but I don’t want to let you down.

I don’t want to hold your spirit back like I’ve read about can happen.

I never had a selfish bone in my body when it came to you my friend

and you made that so easy.

I’ll accept the suffering because I wouldn’t be able to accept you suffering.

I love you my best friend and there will never be another you in my life.

I am so grateful to you.

Your space will remain empty my friend until only you can fill it once again.

Please God let there be some truth to the things I’ve read.

Claudia Iannotti