Zoe-in-Snow-12-15-13 Zoe, our nearly twelve year-old German Shepherd, is unlike any dog I’ve  ever owned. Like most shepherds, she is remarkably loyal, intelligent  and exuberant. She deserves the label, “family member” just as much as  the human beings in our household. When we recently found a tumor  growing on her rib cage by her right front leg, we held our breath. When  our veterinarian confirmed it was cancer, we exhaled with grief.

Given her age and the complexity of the tumor’s location, there’s not  much we can do other than give her love and ensure her remaining time  with us is as pain-free as possible. Despite a bit of a limp, her mind is as sharp as ever. To give her a Kong and let her outdoors with our family is to transform her into a two year-old pup again.

Zoe deserves our family’s honor. We feel privileged to have such a spectacular dog playing the role of “pet.” I have no doubt she could have been trained to be a stellar police dog or serve in the military and save someone’s life. Instead, she’s devoted her life to watching our backs and giving us infinite joy.

We created the Zoe A Day blog as a way to honor her life — and to channel our sadness into something that may provide some inspiration or utility. I would love to call this a 365 day project, but I’m not sure that’s a goal we can attain. So, we’ll post a picture and story of Zoe everyday from now and until her last breath. Some pictures will celebrate her past, many will capture her life during this challenging journey. They will all express the love we feel for her. www.zoeaday.tumblr.com