A life too short
by Lisa Mazzochi DVM

Faith Alexandria Mazzochi

My Dear Faith,
You and your sister Charity Rose were born on Valentine’s Day 2014. Valentine means strong and healthy. Little did I know on that day that I would be doing the whole puppy thing again and bring home two pups eight weeks later. The next task was what to name you. You were named after another Faith that I am sure you have already met by now at the Rainbow Bridge. Faith means complete trust, devotion and confident. You were all that and more. You gave me nothing but complete trust and devotion. You were always by my side, especially over these last four months. Even as sick as you were, you licked away my tears as I cried and held you.
You had to have your own middle name. So, I gave you the name Alexandria, which means defender of mankind, impressive, elegant and noble, powerful and complete, and lastly, a desire to lead. You might not have been a defender of mankind, but you always defended your sister Charity and was there for everyone that loved you. You had such an impressive and elegant stance that said, “Hey Look At ME!” You always led your sister on numerous adventures, the last one being in the Catskills of NY. You both had such a good time on the hiking trails with your two best buddies, Parker and Dakota. You both had the biggest smiles I have ever seen.
At 8 months of age when you were diagnosed with bilateral hip dysplasia, I was devastated. I was going to find the best hip doctor to help you. And your Mommie did. Even though your hips were very bad, the vet in NY said he wasn’t going to put new hips in you until you needed them. Just like your middle name, you had an elegant and powerful bounce to your step and a well-defined muscular conformation to your hips. Nope, no new hips for you yet. You were POWERFUL, just like your name.
Through our many adventures, trials and tribulations over the next 7 years, we had a blast. You were so funny and inquisitive. You and your sister did get into some trouble. The big one was when you both opened a new bag of dog food and ate 7 pounds of a 25-pound bag and was vomiting food for nearly 2 days. You did not like the pool though. You did however like the hose and destroyed at least 7-10 spray nozzles over the years. Sometimes more than 2 in a summer. You didn’t like car rides either. You usually would vomit or have a bowel movement at the most inappropriate time (like when your Mommie had nowhere to pull over to clean it up). You were always thrilled when we got to our destination though.
On January 17, 2022, when you wouldn’t get off the couch after lunch, I knew something was wrong. I was hoping it was just another flare up of your hip dysplasia. I knew something was more serious when I saw your lymph node was enlarged on your rear leg. Then when I lifted you up onto the exam table you cried in pain when your belly was touched. In the back of my mind, I had a sick feeling that it was most likely a Hemangiosarcoma of your spleen. We got that diagnosis 2 days later, on January 19, 2022. You were so brave throughout the whole process. Your chances of survival were grave. You could die that night or maybe days to weeks later. Even if the doctors surgically removed your spleen to stop the bleeding, the cancer had already metastasized to your liver and lymph nodes, and you would have maybe weeks to a few months. I didn’t want to put you through surgery and suffer in pain with what little time you had left in your precious life. I made the decision to bring you home and waited for you to tell me when you were ready to take that journey that only you could make by yourself to the Rainbow Bridge.
As today (May 13, 2022) ends with your death, those of us left behind do not know how to go on without you. The truth is, is that the minute that you were born, is when you started to die. For some, it takes many years, but in your case, my dear Faith, you only had 3,011 days to live your beautiful life here on Earth. You had a great life. You know your Mommie always wanted more time with you. Charity and I were blessed to have you with us for 8 years and 3 months.
I am so sorry Faith. You were and always will be a great dog and your sister Charity is lost without you next to her every day and night. I know that you are watching over your sister because your name means DEVOTION and you were devoted to her as she was to you. I am sure that your namesake Faith, along with her sister Hope, and the one dog that got you through your first 4 years of life, Hopie Too!!, were there to greet you at the Rainbow Bridge and are guiding you the rest of the way until we all meet again. Faith Alexandria, I miss and love you so much and I will think of you every day. We had a fantastic life, and I was so proud to call you, MY DAUGHTER.
Did I tell you that I LOVE you TODAY? I’m going to LOVE you more TODAY than I did YESTERDAY, and I’m going to LOVE you more TOMORROW than I did TODAY.

Love, Hugs and Kisses
Your Mommie Lisa and your sister Charity Rose
Comments would be appreciated by the author, Lisa Mazzochi DVM
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