Maria Henry Gay and her husband, Charles, adopted their son, Robbie, from the foster care system after he suffered years of severe abuse and neglect.
Robbie and his parents love dogs, and have always adopted seniors.
Older children in the foster care system are comparable to senior dogs in shelters.
“If all you guys had wanted was a baby, you would have never gotten me,” Robbie told his mom. He is sadly aware that the longer a child remains in foster care, the less likely they are to be adopted. This can also be said for elderly shelter dogs who are often overlooked because of their age.
For this reason, the Gay family appreciates senior dogs and opens their hearts and home to them.
One of those dogs was Buffy, who they all grew to love immensely.
Buffy was scheduled to have her teeth cleaned, but the vet wanted to have lab-work done before putting her under anesthesia, since she was an older dog.
Sadly, Buffy showed signs of advanced kidney failure, so anesthesia was not an option, and the Gay family made the very difficult and sad decision to put her down before her health declined even more.
Maria immediately went and picked Robbie up from school so he could be there to say goodbye. Robbie told his mom that he wanted to be the one to hold her when she went to heaven.
She agreed and told Robbie that she was proud of him for understanding how important it is to care for old animals and to help make sure they don’t suffer.
“I know how it feels not to be loved or cared for and I don’t want any animal of mine to ever feel that way,” Robbie said to his mom. “It’s only sad for us when they go to heaven. It’s a happy day for them. Thank you for being proud of me. Are you ok, Mom?”
The Gay family was heartbroken, but knew they did the right thing. Although their time with Buffy was short, they developed a very special bond with her.
Robbie reminded his mom that how much you love something doesn’t depend on how long you’ve had it for.
“You’ve only known me for two years, but you love me like it’s been forever,” he said to his mom.
They may not have had Buffy for years, but their love for her was unconditional, and she will always have a place in their hearts.