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On December first years ago I lost my very best friend.

Folks tell me a dog is mans best friend, but the Nikster was more than that. She was glued to me at the hip, and I to her. It was more than a master/dog relationship, very hard to describe.

Wives would leave, houses would burn, cars would crash, the shop would flood, friends would leave and kids would grow up to build a life for themselves, but Niki was always there. When I’d become despondent, the Beagle would usually land on my lap, look me in the eye, then give me a lick from forehead to chin, then curl up on my lap or lie at my feet.

I was the most important thing in the world to that dog. All she wanted from life was to be with me, preferably at the shop. The feeling was mutual.

We got Nik at the Wilkes Barre pound. She was a gift for my oldest son.. I couldn’t understand why he picked her out. There were magnificent Huskies, Shepherds, Labs and other popular breeds. He kept coming back to this scraggly little dog that no one else cared about. We ended up taking one of the biggest treasures in my life home.

Niki was content to paddle around the shop mooching for biscuits, barking at horses or soliciting a scratch or a pet. She loved the shop as much as I.

I could take Nik fishing, she would lay at my feet. Where I went she went.

When it would be time to go to sleep at night, the Beagle would land, put her head on my shoulder and go to sleep. When she became to old to jump onto the bed, I’d lay down until I heard a soft “woof”. I’d pick her up and she would attain her standard position.

I guess it may seem stupid to put something like this on Facebook, and maybe it is, but Niki deserves a tribute.

Life isn’t the same without her.

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