Saying Goodbye to a Special Heart Dog Leads to Hello to a New Hero
Megan Lowell was living in Colorado when her family dog, Molly, passed away back home. Megan, 21 at the time, grieved from afar, but it wasn’t until she moved back home a few months after Molly’s death that she felt the true impact of losing Molly.
Megan’s friend Jessica saw how Molly’s death affected Megan and decided that she needed her very own dog. That’s how sweet Belle came into Megan’s life.
Belle was built like a Border Collie, but most of her personality was Golden Retriever: happy, eager to please, intelligent, athletic, incredibly loving. Belle was by Megan’s side as she went through her 20s and into her 30s. She was a best friend, a roommate, a confidant, someone to laugh with, a shoulder to cry on—she was everything to Megan.
Then, several months after her 11th birthday, Belle got very sick, very fast. She didn’t really show many signs until just a few weeks before she was diagnosed with two large tumors in her spleen and additional tumors on her heart. The tumors in her spleen were so large that the Doctor said they could cause it to rupture at any time. After discussing the options, shedding many tears, and ultimately knowing that she couldn’t allow Belle to be in pain any longer, Megan made the hardest decision of her life. She said goodbye to her best friend on April 8, 2013.
Megan recalls the next few weeks being horrible, and she quickly realized that she needed another dog. She couldn’t replace Belle, and wouldn’t want to, but she did want to have a companion again and she also needed a distraction from missing Belle.
Enter Stella! Megan brought Golden girl Stella home on June 30, 2013, and describes her as incredibly (surprisingly) well behaved, sweet, happy ALL the time, and has an excellent sense of humor. Stella and Megan have become pretty much inseparable! Although Stella didn’t fill the hole that Belle left in her heart—that will always be Belle’s spot—she did fill another hole that Megan didn’t even know she had!
Stella has truly brought out the best in her owner, so when Megan heard about the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study and that it was a study to better understand cancer in all dogs, not just Golden Retrievers, she was really excited. She was even happier when she found out that Stella was a good candidate. Just a few weeks ago, Megan and Stella received the official acceptance and learned that Stella is Hero #2085. Megan is thrilled that Stella is now part of such an amazing study and she can’t wait to see the good that comes from it. Stella is happy, too, because it means an extra trip to see her friends at the Rice Creek Animal Hospital, whom she LOVES!
To learn more about Morris Animal Foundation and our other programs please visit morrisanimalfoundation.org.