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All Dogs Go To Heaven

“I have sometimes thought of the final cause of dogs having such short lives and I am quite satisfied it is in compassion to the human race; for if we suffer so much in losing a dog after an acquaintance of ten or twelve years, what would it be if they were to live double that time?”

-Sir Walter Scott

I experienced the loss of a pet this week. My first pet loss. My family Boxer Bandit passed away on Tuesday night. At fourteen years old, this is quite a long life for a boxer. Most boxers live about 8 – 10 years. Bandit had been doing great, and while she was grey, and slower moving than she use to be, she was the happiest, sweetest dog.

We got Bandit when I was in eight grade. My family has always had boxers as long as I can remember. I wish I could find the pic of my mom’s boxer Oscar sitting on a pool float with sunglasses on in the 70’s to post right here, but I don’t know where it is. Anyway, My Aunt Lucy (who took us to the spa last weekend!) bred her Boxer Belle, years ago, and Bandit was the baby of the litter. My sister Hannah paid my aunt $5 as her “deposit” on Bandit. Bandit came home with us a few weeks later, much to my mothers protest! But come on, how can you say no to a 5 year old, who just spent her life savings on a puppy?

Bandit was without a doubt the best dog in the world. She was the sweetest, kindest, most loyal dog. She was not hyper, she was wonderful with kids, and she had the biggest heart. Whenever I walked through my parent’s door, Bandit was waiting there to greet me and shake her hips, since she had no tail. Ha. She always knew when something was wrong with one of us, and she was the first to curl up next to you to let you know she was there. She loved to go in car rides, and she loved to sleep on my bed when allowed.

I saw Bandit when I was home for Father’s Day on Sunday. I remember she got up and greeted me as usual, and I pet her and told her “hi sweet girl!” I noticed she had a cough, and asked me parents what was wrong. They said they were taking her to the vet Monday morning. I remember just watching her for a minute as she circled around her bed in the middle of the living room. She always turned circles on her bed to find “just the right spot” and then she plopped down as usual and just sat there with her little face on her paws looking at me. So sweet.

I was only home for about an hour, but I always- always tell the dogs bye. I gave Bandit a hug and told my dad Happy Fathers day and was out the door. In hind sight- I am so sad I wasn’t home longer on Sunday. I had gotten back from the spa that afternoon, and had been at the pool for a couple hours before going home for dinner. I was exhausted and wanted to get back to my house before to late. If I had known that would be the last time I would see Bandit, I of course would have stayed longer. That is the thing about life, you just never know.

Bandit’s cough got worse, and the vet put her on antibiotics and steroids. My dad was home with her all day Tuesday, and said she was following him around like usual and being her sweet self. She began to deteriorate quickly, and it was clear she had to go to the doggy ER when she began coughing up blood. She was having a hard time breathing, and it was clear something was very wrong. The vet took an x-ray, and found out her lungs were full of tumors. Boxers are extremely prone to cancer, and it is a wonder she did not have problems earlier.

My parents were with her when they decided to put her down. She was in so much pain and distress, there was no other option. It all happened so quickly that my sisters and I didn’t get to see her. I have to think my parents were also wanting to protect us, by not calling us when it happened. They said it was the saddest moment, and they just pet her sweet head, and told her what a good doggy she was. It happened quickly, and luckily she was not in pain for long.

Bandit was a part of our family. And we will miss her greatly. She loved her role as our protector, and she loved each one of us. She watched us all grow up, and I think that is another reason she lived so long. She made sure we all made it out the door, and on to college, before she left us.

{Hannah and Bandit}

You dog lovers out there know how special a bond with a dog is. And for those of you who are not dog owners, just call me an emotional sap! Haha. The first thing I did when I got home Wednesday (after finding out) was run and grab Sadie and just love on her. I am so saddened by Bandit’s loss, but I also am so in love with my precious pug puppy who has many good years ahead of her. And when I get sad, I just remind myself, that “All Dogs Go to Heaven”.

Thanks for listening. I just had to share what was on my heart today!


  1. Oh I'm so sorry about Bandit!! 🙁 I've only had my dog for 4 years and if anything ever happened to her, I would be DEVASTATED so I can't even imagine how you feel. I'll be thinking about you today!!

  2. Kristin says:

    I am so sorry. My puppy is my baby, I can't even imagine what it must feel like to lose your dog. It's wonderful that bandit was able to live such a long (and sounds like) happy life! Stay strong girl, I'm thinking of you~

  3. leigh ashley says:

    aww… i'm so sorry for your loss allison! i had a cat pass away a couple years ago and it's so sad. sending hugs your way!!

  4. I am so, so sorry to hear about Bandit. Animals become a real member of the family, and it is so aweful when they pass. Stay strong missy!

  5. Aww…. Blog hug! I grew up with 3 dogs, and the last one just passed away this Spring. It is the hardest thing, keep your head up! Sadie will give you puppy kisses! 🙂

  6. Mogyver says:

    This just made me cry. And while I'm sitting here with tears running down my face, my doggie Norman is looking at me so concerned and just came up to me and sat at my feet. I am so sorry for your loss. All dogs DO go to Heaven.

  7. Kerr says:

    I am so sorry about Bandit. It sounds like he had a great life and now you can think of him running around in doggy heaven!

  8. So sorry about your sweet boxer 🙁 I had to put my sweet Brittany Spaniel, Mac Daddy to sleep the day after Thanksgiving in 2008 and it was by far the hardest decision I've ever had to make. He was only 3 and had pancreatitis. Just know that Bandit is loving life in heaven and that every cloud he lays on is full of "just the right spots". I really enjoy your blog posts!

  9. I am SO SO sorry to hear this. 🙁 Boxers hold a special place in my heart. My parents have had boxers my entire life and I can still remember the day my mom called to tell me my childhood pup Rowdy went to heaven. It was one of the worst days of my life and only the 3rd time Ive ever seen my dad cry. They have 2 right now and I dont know what we would do without them. Im SO Sorry for your loss and my heart breaks for you.

  10. Molly says:

    Aw, poor Bandit! I'm so sorry for your loss, but I'm glad there wasn't a long suffering. And yes, all dogs do go to heaven! Love you sweet girl!

  11. This brought tears to my eyes. I'm so sorry. It hurts so much to lose a pet. Our 10-year old black lab went to doggie heaven in March and I miss her so much!
    "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole!"

  12. Lauren says:

    I am so sorry to hear about Bandit. Boxers are always the sweetest dogs, and i just love how they shake their behinds when they get excited! My parents got a dog when I was in 6th grade and I will be devastated when he passes as well 🙁 Just remember all the good times.

  13. Abby says:

    Aw. So sorry to hear this, Allie 🙁 Losing pets is never any fun – but take solace that he lived a long, fulfilled life with you all!

  14. Juliana says:

    First of all, I am so sorry. I always thinking temporary home when it comes to losing someone you love–a furry friend or a human. Thinking of you.

    Also-that is crazy we have the same dress. I LOVE it and I have it in the dark blue too!

  15. Whitney says:

    I'm so sorry 🙁

    Earlier this year, I had a cat pass away. I had him ever since I was in the third grade.

  16. I am so so so sorry. My stone cold heart has made me mist up a little because I think everyone know what it's like to lose a furry family member. My thoughts and prayers are with you!

  17. Im so sorry Allison! This absolutely breaks my heart. We lost our family dog a few months ago and she also had to be put down. No one should ever have to go through that difficult decision but sometimes its best for the pup. So sorry, love you.

  18. Dree says:

    I am so, so sorry for your loss. I am a new follower, so I don't know you very well, but this touched me so deeply. I lost a childhood cat suddenly a few years ago, and I still think of her. To lose a furry friend is heartbreaking. I will keep you in my thoughts!

  19. Tarryn says:

    I am so sorry Allie! I knew if I read this post I would cry… and I am. I'm remembering how Bandit used to eat the M&M's when they spilled and I would freak out but they never made her sick and how she always looked out for Princess at puppy school and was always the best cuddle buddy during our Friday night tv/movie nights! My family and myself send hugs she was an amazing dog and I know how much she meant to you.

  20. Laura says:

    I'm so so sorry Allie… Imhere laying in bed and started crying while reading this.. It's so true how amazing these little (or big) animals can be. I know bandit is safe and happy in heaven too… And knows how lucky she was to have such an amazing family. Love u!

  21. mFw says:

    I'm so sorry! No matter what it is hard to lose a puppy dog! Bandit was adorable! I was in sixth grade when we lost our first dog and I was not a happy camper for a couple days! Hope your weekend is better!

  22. April says:

    okay so now I am bawling. I am so so sorry. If you look at my blog you know that my 2 dogs are my world. One of them got sick the other night and I thought she was poisoned. Girl, I so called 911. She was gasping for breath! I didn't know what else to do! LOL. They were no help. I induced vomiting and her condition got better. She is now fine thank God. I've never been so scared though.

    again I am so very sorry.

  23. Cassie says:

    I'm sitting at my desk and crying. It's one of the worst things to lose a pet. My two puppies are everything to me and I just can't imagine having to put one of them down. Lots of hugs to you!

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