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Senior dogs are often overlooked in shelters because of their old age, and it definitely takes a special family to open their heart and home to one.
But Beth and Michael Clark didn’t even hesitate when they saw Rocky, a 17-year-old dog who had been abandoned at Anne Arundel County Animal Services, back in 2015.
Despite his gray face and skinny body, the Clarks fell in love with Rocky at first sight. They refused to leave him to die in a cage, so they brought him home and made him feel comfortable.
As time went on, all of the things that come with old age began to hinder Rocky. He had trouble getting around and could no longer go on walks or walk up the stairs.
But Michael would carry him up and down the stairs, and their walks turned into just relaxing in the sun together.
The couple shared a very special bond with Rocky, and the old pup helped them get through tough times such as a miscarriage in July 2016.
They were then elated to find out that they were expecting again a few months later, and Rocky helped share the news with everyone in a photoshoot.
Rocky stayed by Beth’s side during her whole pregnancy and could sense the days when she wasn’t feeling well.
Unfortunately, Rocky wasn’t feeling so well either.
When Bet was seven months pregnant, Rocky’s health began to decline, but he remained strong and still had a will to live.
Two months later, his new baby sister, Hazel, was born. Rocky was so happy to meet her and sniffed her as soon as she came home. He placed his head right near her, which brought tears to Beth’s eyes.
But later that night, Rocky’s condition worsened, and the couple knew it was finally time to let him go.
Rocky went peacefully with his family by his side. He felt love the day they adopted him, and he felt that same love the night they said goodbye.
The Clark’s felt comfort in knowing that Rocky held on long enough to meet his baby sister.
Friends of Anne Arundel County Animal Care & Control, the shelter Rocky was adopted from, wrote a touching post on Facebook to Hazel, honoring her late doggy brother.
“Dear Hazel: Someday your mom and dad will tell you all about your first dog, Rocky.”
“Thursday night he peacefully left the world that you just entered. Before that happened, your mom and dad took a picture of the two of you together. Someday, they will show you that picture, and tell you how wonderful and how loved your first dog was, even though your lives only overlapped so very briefly.”