DXE has always been a dog-friendly business. Not everyone is a “dog person,” but we are. Maybe it’s weird to have dogs at work. Occasionally I wonder if it is downright unprofessional. Yesterday I went to pick up my lawnmower and a giant chocolate Labrador greeted me as I walked in the door. I thought, “This is a business that I want to support.” Again, maybe I’m strange, but I don’t think so. Studies show that having your pet at work is a stress-reliever (no doubt the study was conducted by a dog lover). We don’t have walk-in traffic, but most of the visitors we have at our DXE office are impressed by the presence of our furry friends.

In August of 2001, my wife of two years and I decided to get a dog. I’ve always had Golden Retrievers, so why mess up a good thing? We found a breeder in Nowheresville, TN who had two female puppies left. I’ve always had female dogs, so that’s what I wanted. On the way, I told my wife she could pick which one we took home…as long as it was the calmer of the two. We left with my best friend for the last 13 years: Callie.

Callie was an odd dog at times, with several of her own personality traits. She cared nothing about being friends with other dogs (except my parents dog, a loveable mutt named Molly), and only wanted to be with her family. She was anxious around others and had a nervous demeanor outside her comfort zone. However, if I was going somewhere, she was down to ride. While a birthday balloon would freak her out, she had no problem jumping in the back of my plane and going up. She went to work with me every day and accompanied me all over town. Being in our presence was her only desire, except for food, of course. Callie had more seniority than anyone else at DXE. An employee once yelled at Callie for begging in the lunch room. This obviously would not do, and I informed him that she would still be employed long after he was gone from DXE. I was right.

Callie had an annual skin infection, had to eat special food and went through a half dozen surgeries (with one removing a softball-sized tumor from her liver). This dog easily cost me more than one of my kids…and she was worth every penny. She lived in the country, got long walks without a leash (I can count on one hand the times she ever wore a collar or was on a leash) and was with her family almost every second of her life. She deserved it.

From the night we brought her home, I knew that one day I would have to say goodbye to this beautiful friend and family member. That day came on March 16th, 2014. Callie drifted off to a final sleep in her best friend’s arms. Her family all got to tell her how much she will be missed and what a great dog she was. My kids had questions and miss her terribly. I suppose it is every parent’s rite of passage to explain the loss of a pet. I’m not so sure about cats, but we are certain all dogs go to heaven (no offense to the pro-feline lobby).

Rest in Peace, good girl. You will not be forgotten.

“Death cannot erase us from this universe.” -Einstein

Post by Matt Spencer

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