I Had to Say Goodbye to My Boy, Chance
He was my best friend. He was my support when I couldn’t stop crying. He made me laugh when I needed it the most. Even when he misbehaved, his handsome face made it impossible to stay upset. His name was Chance and we grew up together. On Friday, August 7th, 2020, Chance went to Doggie Heaven.
There’s obviously a story here. If you follow me on any social platform, you know that I’m a cat dad now. Truth is, I was a hardcore dog person long before. But a few years ago Chance and I were separated. So what happened?
Our life together began in 2007. Chance was just 8 weeks old when he entered my life that April. This little Jack Russell was cute beyond words. We were living in Texas at the time because that’s where my first job was on TV. He weighed only a few pounds but he already had a huge personality packed into a tiny body.
As tough as he acted, he was such a baby. Our first few weeks together were tough. Per advice of everyone around me, I tried to get him to sleep in another room and not in my bed. So this is how that went. He’d cry all night until I went to pick him up. He’d fall asleep in my arms and once I set him down again, he’d start crying. Finally, one night I gave up. I let him jump into the bed with me. He curled up, fell asleep and from that night forward, he slept with me every night.
Later in 2007 Chanced I moved to Upstate NY not far from where I grew up. It was here that Chance encountered snow for the first time and let’s just say he wasn’t a huge fan. He would never ever be a fan of snow. We had that in common.
We lived in Syracuse for 10 years. We owned a cute place just outside of downtown. Chance ruled the house. This was his kingdom and we lived by his rules. He loved lying outside on the grass and sunbathing. And those squirrels! He never quite caught one but boy did he try. I’ll never forget his proud smile when the yard was clear of those squirrel intruders. He was proud of his hard work.
So here is how we ended up apart. In the Fall of 2017 we moved to the New York City area. This would be a massive change for both of us. No more house, no more yard, no more kingdom to rule over. No more squirrels to chase. No more sunbathing without a leash.
Chance, like many Jack Russells, had a lot of anxiety. If you’ve read my previous blogs, you know that’s also something him and I shared. At nearly 11 years old, this move was too much for good ole’ Chance. He cried for 10 hours straight every day that I was at work.
On camera I’d watch him jumping at the door until he legs couldn’t handle it anymore. He was losing weight, eating less, getting dehydrated. He was so incredibly homesick and it broke my heart. I tried so many things to help him. Everything from new medications, to extra dog walkers, to a special trainer to work with both of us. After months of efforts to ease his anxiety, there was no improvement. He started becoming violent and I didn’t even recognize him anymore.
I was faced with a very difficult decision. Chance hated apartment living and city life. I knew that if he had a yard again that he’d be happy like he was in Syracuse. Thankfully, a family friend, Steve, took Chance and gave him the best last few years of his life. Chance bounced back and was able to sun bathe, smile, and chase those pesky squirrels once again. Giving up my best friend was the hardest thing I ever had to do. But I’d do anything to make my boy smile again.
I’ll share something special with all of you. This is how Chance got his name. As you know I’m a meteorologist. I wanted him to have a weather related name and I didn’t want it to be terribly obvious.
I looked through a weather glossary and stopped on the word CHANCE. Of course! It’s a weatherpersons favorite word and it’ll forever be extra special for me. Chance gave me a heart full of love and wonderful memories. I wasn’t with Chance at the end but I got lots of updates on a regular basis. He was a funny, stubborn, loving, cuddly boy right until the very end. Rest in peace, my boy, my best friend, my funny little man.