A Tribute to Sevilla

Often I’m awaken in the deep night by my dire sobs and streaming tears. I dream about you almost everyday. Running toward me with that floppy tongue and those crystalline eyes. I open up my car door, get out, and you immediately sit in front of me waiting patiently, yet excitingly, for a hello hug and kiss. You were always so over-the-moon happy to see me.

Then your final months of agony quickly, and quietly took over your beautiful soul.

Sevilla, our beloved dog, passed away August 31, 2016 in the very early hours of the morning. You were 8 years old.


I remember it all so vividly. The night before you passed was unlike any other day, which was a tad unusual since you hadn’t been yourself for a few months. You were actually running around and being playful! It was the most fun the family and I had seen from you in so long. I left you, and went home joyous and happy. I was thinking to myself that I was so glad that you were finally back to being your normal, energetic self.

The next day I had a flight to Germany to be with John, so I was anxiously trying to make myself go to sleep. After a few hours of Netflix and a cup of tea, I was finally fast asleep. A few hours pass when I hear my phone ringing. I didn’t even check to see who was calling I just answer. I hear Dad’s voice and he tells me, “Jillian, I’m so sorry baby. Sevilla isn’t here anymore.” His voice is cracking over the phone. I can’t comprehend it at all. It feels like my heart has been ripped out from my chest. I keep crying hysterically over the phone saying “No! No! No! Why?” I’m an absolute wreck. I can’t speak. I can’t think. The only thing coming from my mouth are hysterics. I had to see you one last time. Dad said to come to the vet hospital just down the road from our house. I hung up immediately, and slammed my head into my pillow. Crying with such excruciation that I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t believe it. Then, I finally get myself to roll out of bed five long minutes later, and put on a jacket and shoes. Still sobbing uncontrollably, I walk to [my sister] Sydnie’s room to tell her that I’m leaving to go see Sevilla. Sydnie was on the phone with Dad as I knocked on her door. We left two minutes later.

Sydnie and I arrive to the vet hospital, and we’re immediately escorted to the room where our parents are.My Mom then takes us into the exam room where you are. Sevilla, our beautiful girl, just lying on the exam table coddled up in a comforter–lifeless. You are gone. Your body is here, your scent is here, your spirit is here, but you’re gone. It hit me like a ton of bricks. I broke. I’m full of complete sadness and copious questions. I wrap my hands and arms over your still, warm body just holding you. I whisper in your ear telling you how beautiful you are in every possible way. I didn’t want to let you go. I kept grasping you tightly hoping that this was all a figment of my imagination or a dream. I prayed that I got to blink and wake up. But no.

I wanted and needed to know how you passed. Despite my broken heart, I was brimming with questions. Looking back, about three months prior you began acting so melancholy unlike we’ve ever seen before. You no longer went to chase squirrels outside, not even run. You would get up slowly, and would just lay around all day. For such an energetic dog it was so uncharacteristic of you so we thought it could be old age. We had been taking you to the vet every month, sometimes twice a month, for three months leading up to this day. X-rays, blood tests, everything was done. The doctors said that you probably had seasonal depression. It wasn’t. Then with some of the test results, they deducted that it could be Addison’s Disease, but the doctors later unconfirmed it. You had a lump behind your right shoulder, but doctors said it was nothing. We would leave the appointments thinking what is going on? It just didn’t make any sense. We knew something wasn’t right. At the vet hospital in the morning of your passing, the doctors found out that you had cancer. And you had it for a while. A tumor exploded in your stomach that night. The doctors said that to operate would be too dangerous, and chances of survival were less than one percent. You were in pain for so long, and we couldn’t help you. We didn’t know. I’m so so sorry Sevilla baby. I wish we could’ve stopped it. I wish we could have taken your pain away. But now I know that you and Great Grandma have met again up in heaven, and you’re no longer in pain which is all I want for you.

You were our guard dog. You kept our family safe from anyone and anything. Super territorial and overwhelmingly loyal from day one. You were obedient to us, and vicious to uninvited strangers. You really were the sweetest, most gentle being. You loved to play, and would blush so quickly if anyone called you beautiful. Such a magnificent dog you were.

Not a day passes that I don’t think of you. You were such a huge part of my life. You never judged, you would just sit with me, let me pet you and we’d just waste the days away. My favorite memory of you is when I would get you to lay down with me, and I’d proceed to tickle you under your arms and on your belly until you smiled. “Shmile, shmile, shmile!” I would repeat, and from then it wouldn’t be long until you sported the cutest, most biggest smile from ear to ear. Remember? We would do this all the time, every time we were together. All of the lovely memories I have with you will forever be cherished and never forgotten. You have a piece of my heart forever.

Everyone in the family had their own intimate connection with you. It was hard not to. A significant moment that I will cherish forever was when you met John for the first time. It was like a Christmas morning to you. I warned John that you could be a little feisty, but you jumped on his lap like you had known him forever. Smiling and licking his hands, arms and face. I was astounded. He wasn’t family, but you made sure that he felt like it was. I had never seen you like this with anyone else. You loved John. You had an instant loving relationship and connection. In fact, sometimes you would just go sit by him with your head on his lap. I like to think that your kindness and protection of of him was your  way of telling me that he’s a keeper.

In the end, I cannot change your fate. I hate that you left, but I’m glad you did when you did. You were such an intelligent dog. I think you knew that I was leaving, and you wanted to say goodbye to me. The night before when we were playing around you knew I was to be gone the next day for Germany, and you knew you were going to be gone too.  I don’t know what I would have done if I found out in some other way and in some other place. You know my heart wouldn’t have been able to handle it so you let me say goodbye. We got to have one last normal day with you. You were the best dog in the whole world. I will always remember you.

I love you Sevilla, forever.