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Benny “Big Ben” Varnado

Alpha: 6-18-11 Omega: 12-10-23.

Benny was a loving, vibrant, happy and intelligent dog. Benny loved belly rubs, lounging on my lap, giving his mommy kisses and eating everyone’s food. He loved to follow mommy around the house. He would follow me to the bathroom and would wait by the door until I came out. He loved car rides and was always ready when he heard any car keys jingle. Benny could be very stubborn too. When he could not come along for rides, I had a dicult time getting him back inside. I would have to bribe him with snacks. Benny would nudge my hand with his head and paw for his daily body rubs. He also loved to have baths and after his baths, he would be so refreshed that he would zoom all through the house, jumping on couches, chairs, you name it! Benny loved people, attention and love. He loved to sit among company and never wanted to be left out. He knew he was a very special part of the family.

Benny was almost thirteen years old. Over the last years, Benny’s health started to decline. Benny began to lose his vision due to worsening cataracts. His veterinarian explained that he was not a good candidate for the cataract surgery and that it would be too risky. Last year he awkwardly attempted to jump o the couch, where he would lounge with me frequently, and was found immobile and injured. After he was rushed to the veterinarian, I learned that Benny fractured his spine in two places. This revelation changed everyone’s life forever. Benny was hospitalized for a few days but later came home on strict kennel restrictions, pain medicine, and muscle relaxers. He went through a lot of pain and his mommy was there with him through it all. There were many sleepless days and nights trying to comfort and nurse him back to good health. My heart was broken for him and to witness him, my baby, change and decline.

Due to his injuries, he lost the ability to walk but he was still so strong and a little fighter. Benny made many attempts to make a few steps and stand but he never regained the ability to walk again. I never gave up on him and continued to physically care for him and loved him. Unfortunately, in recent months he began to fail to thrive and stopped eating and drinking on his own. I spoon fed him and used a syringe to give him water. Even with this, Benny didn’t appear to be in pain. His labs and blood work were still stable. During this time, he especially enjoyed laying on his mommy’s chest and his daily body rubs. His mommy knew he was not thriving and would be leaving soon. I made him feel as comfortable as possible and continued to care for him. I wanted him to know that I loved him and would never give up on him. My Benny will always be irreplaceable. Benny brought joy into my life for so many years and will always and forever be in my heart. “I love you always my sweet boy.”