Out of the blue, on Tuesday morning, my 12-year-old Portuguese Water Dog, Olivia, was unable to stand. She kept falling over and when she would try to get up, she would become exhausted and collapse on the floor panting. I carried her in my arms into the vet and he examined her carefully. He said she was severely anemic and he thought she might have a mass in her belly; he uttered the word "cancer" but said he needed to run some tests. Clinging to the hope that we had just been walking around our neighborhood the night before and therefore she couldn't possibly be that sick, I gave her a kiss on the nose and told her I'd see her later. In the afternoon when we spoke, the vet said she was resting and he planned to give her a blood transfusion on Wednesday morning because of the anemia and that he would call to let me know how that went and what the tests results showed. He called as promised except instead he shared the news that she had passed away late Tuesday night. My studio is directly behind my house so throughout the day, I often would stop in to take Olivia outside or get her some water. She always would sit with me while I had lunch and she was thrilled if I gave her a carrot or pepper-- she loved her veggies! For a change of scenery, she would come hang out in my studio just to be close by. Losing her so quickly has thrown me for a loop. While I am glad that she didn't suffer through a long decline, I haven't adjusted yet to her not being here. There's a little less joy in Paradise this week without my girl, Olivia.