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For my dearest Mao -

We found him on the MACSPRO website. I actually had my eye on another available dog, but his foster family (the wonderful Pam and Curtis Robbins) said Mao really needed a home, and was such a handsome, good fellow. So we went to visit him and I fell victim pretty quickly. He gave me a confused look/head tilt combo from across the room, and that was it.

He was found on the beach in Puerto Rico, an obvious stray. Kids treated him really poorly, throwing things at him and goodness knows what else. He was so nervous, and it took him a while to relax and let his guard down. When his personality started to come out, he would prance around the kitchen while I was cooking, throwing himself about in hopes of a treat (which he would always get). Such a calm, sweet boy who just wanted to be in the room with you, LOVED to go on walks, and rides in the car. The dog beach was his favorite, and it was such a pleasure to see him running around, carefully avoiding the water. He took a particular liking to bulldogs for some reason, and would get a little too friendly with them when given the chance. It was so embarrassing!

He was my constant companion for 8 1/2 wonderful years, through thick and thin, and I know he came into my life by no accident. He passed on from an aggressive cancer, and I miss him terribly. He will never be replaced, and though I'm not quite ready to get another dog, he endeared me to the shar pei breed forever. I am so thankful and honored that we had that time together, he truly was a gift. I love you so much Mao, and think about you every day, with tears but also laughter. Thank you my sweet , sweet buddy. I hope we will meet again one day, though really, you're always right here in my heart.

- Julie