Meatball – March, 2012

The world is missing one of the greatest lap dogs of all time, Mr. Meatball Fraize. Meatball passed three weeks ago and I’m finally ready to celebrate the best 2 years of his life and accept things I cannot change. Fostering and adopting dogs with an unknown background or history can be frustrating for any doggy parent, but I have no regrets, only love and thanks for his undying devotion and kind heart. I would have done anything for that dog, and I miss him every day.

With a husband that works most nights, Meatball was the best companion and guardian I could ask for. He did not ask for much, but I showered him with peanut butter kongs, a warm spot on my couch, off-leash runs in grassy fields, and lots and lots of cuddling and belly rubs.

Meatball came to us as a foster dog in November of 2009. He was quickly adopted but did not work well with the home dynamics of his new family. My husband and I were sad to see him go and without hesitation, decided to adopt him ourselves. I remember getting the call that he was going to be returned to NCBR and I jumped in my car and called Lori and said “we’ll take him! I’ll be there tonight!” I couldn’t wait to see his smushy face and have my favorite cuddle buddy back. My favorite memory of him was actually when I went to bring him to his forever home. He ran out of the house and jumped up 3 feet in the air. His little nubby tail was wagging non-stop as he planted wet, slobbery kisses on my face. When I opened the car door, he jumped right into the passenger seat and leaned out the window as if to say “come on, take me home already!”

I could go on forever as to why Meatball had a good heart and soft side, despite his massive 80 pound build. But unfortunately, he had a conflicting side that was his ultimate downfall. He was never truly comfortable in his own skin and that caused aggression with other dogs. Ultimately, we had to make one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to face, one that was best for Meatball and my family. Every time Meatball did something wrong or showed aggression, he would look at me with pleading eyes and now I understand that he is truly at peace with himself. If there is a lesson to Meatball’s passing, it’s that animals can be victims to human cruelty and ignorance and they deserve a second chance at life. I am so glad he got to live out his last few years surrounded by our love.

I want to imagine Meatball jumping and hopping around a beautiful golden field, looking for jack rabbits hidden under bushes and chasing chirping birds. When I call his name, I want to see his smiling face as runs towards me, excited to go home to his favorite couch and loving parents and baby sister.