Dog Down

I held your paw, stroked your head

Witnessed you gently, float into a pain-free place

unconditional love


You were my buddy

Tucked in behind my legs while I slept

You always seemed to sense my sadness

Your fur caught many tears

I said “goodbye, I love you” each time I left home

Greeted by your great big smile upon each return

Your basket of toys lies untouched

While I hold your empty collar

But it was time

To say goodbye, I love you.

As it was now your time to leave home

Archie Gray 8/30/2010-04/08/2022

Laura Gray
Laura Grayhttp://ipride.net/
Laura is the Founder/Executive Director of IPride, a self-esteem, empowerment program for youth which she created in 2015. A published author, living kidney donor, and a fervent advocate for sexual assault victims, Laura is a proud mother of 3 sons and 3 dogs. She strives to live each day with a grateful heart and feels especially connected to herself and God when she is in nature. For additional information on IPride, please visit ipride.net. Educations and Certifications; Bachelor of Arts in Communications, Bowling Green State University; Professional Life Coach, IPride Life Coaching, World Coach Institute, Miami FL; Social Emotional Learning and Mindfulness Teaching, Breathe for Change, San Francisco, CA.; The Science of Well-Being, Yale University; Personal Trainer, Athletics, and Fitness Association of America. Highlights; Living kidney donor, 2021; Featured author, “Mayhem to Miracles”, Sacred Stories publication, October 2021. IPride YouTube Channel, IPride in 5: Peace In, Peace Out; Presenter, Youth Leadership Summit, 2018, 2020; Panelist, “Sexual Assault: The Conversation Continues”, Bowling Green State University, 2020; Featured Story, “Seen + Heard: A series of photographs of men and women ending their silence with regards to sexual assault”, 2017. Published, “The Little Cloth Secret Keeper”, Women for One: Truthtellers 2017 Published, 3 poems, Luna Negra, Kent State University, 2012.


  1. Oh, Laura-Oh, this experience of losing a dog. Oh, such a grieflovegrief- Having learned unconditional love from a dog, I know the depth of loss this can be-and the immense love prints-sweet dog paw prints left on a human heart. I appreciate your heartfelt poem-the pouring out of words-the real inside the experience. Sending you so much love and many hugs, my soul sister friend. In my mind’s eye, I can see Layla greeting Archie with tails wagging on the other side of the Rainbow Bridge.

  2. Laura, we have twice had let our fur friends go… it is such a hard thing. They bless our lives with loyalty, unparalleled love and they radiate happiness whenever we’re nearby… it’s difficult to imagine anything that approaches what dogs bring us. Comfort, peace and good memories to you as navigate this time “after.” Just know that when the Arch dude closed his eyes for the last time that he knew he had blessed to have you in his life. May his memory keep you smiling and may your every thought be of the great things that you both meant to each other.

  3. Dear, dear Laura,
    I am so sorry! We had to put down one of our Shih Tzus in December. We love our other, Churchill, but Winston dazzled. I think of him every day. After multiple visits between Vets, E.R.s, NeuroVets, pills, carrying him outside, the inevitable decision visited us.
    Take comfort knowing he was loved and gave you so much.

  4. Oh Laura… I am so so sorry for this loss.
    There is something so incredibly hard in losing this companion who loves you unconditionally and is always by your side – when it matters most.
    I have felt that void and loss. I was paralyzed with pain for days.
    I feel your heart and your anguish on this day.