Simba
5/5/2007 - 7/13/2020It is with a heavy heart that I let you all know that Simba has transitioned. (5/5/2007 – 7/13/2020). He transitioned peacefully and beautifully at home. Simba was a faithful friend and family member, and he accompanied me almost everywhere. He loved water. He loved snow. He loved the sun. And he came to work with me every day and was the best road dog. We drove as far north as Montreal, all the way down to Orlando, and as far west as Chicago. We hiked the Appalachian trail and he accompanied me on research trips. Simba made friends easily – including humans, other canines, felines, and equines. He just had an energy about him. And that energy will be missed by many.

There are so many stories I could share about this great hound, but the one I think encapsulates Simba best happened in my classroom about a year after I first adopted him. While sitting in a circle, I was facilitating a discussion on child abuse in a small seminar called Trauma, Culture, & Coping when a student sitting directly across from me started to tremble and began to cry. Simba, who was lying next me on the floor, got up on his own accord, walked over to the student, and nestled his head in her lap. She immediately calmed. He stayed there with his nestled head for the rest of the class.

It was after this that I realized Simba would make a good therapy dog and we started training. Although he briefly worked with autistic adults, hospice care is where he shined. He was patient and kind with those nearing the end of their lives and he always seemed to know when to be silly and when to be subdued.

And while he took great care of others, he took extraordinary care of me. He was an abundant, daily source of both joy and tranquility. And when I had cancer last year he was with me every step of the way, even though he was contending with his own health challenges. And I cannot even articulate how important he was to me during these past socially distant months, as the deadly COVID – 19 pandemic took an exceptional toll on my family.

Simba, I honestly believe you hung on as long as you did to not only ensure my survival, but to help usher me into a renewed state of healing and happiness.

But now it’s time for you to rest, sweet Simba. Thank you for everything. You were such a very good boy.
Shawn McGuffeyDorchester, MassachusettsJuly 31, 2020
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Your memorial to Simba really touched my heart. He sounded like a wonderful and special boy and I’m so very sorry for your loss. I lost my sweet Allie a week after you lost Simba so I know first hand, as does everyone that posted a memorial to their beloved fur babies, how difficult this time of grief is. I’ll keep you in my prayers.Vicki Sullivan - August 1, 2020

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