Comedian Sarah Silverman's adopted dog, Duck, died at 19. Sarah penned the most loving and touching tribute to him. Sarah had Duck for 14 years and described that relationship as the "longest" she's ever had. She adopted Duck from a no kill shelter when he was about 5 years old. By the end of his life, Duck was blind and couldn't walk very well, and Sarah carried him around in a sling like a baby. It truly shows you the bond that can be made between human and animal. But one of the most touching and sad things about Sarah's ode to Duck is that she says he was her "only experience of maternal love." Wow. I don't know much about Sarah's history, but I'm guessing she's referring to not having any children, and how Duck was her child, her only experience of feeling maternal. But it also sounds suspiciously like Duck was her family -- her true family.
Sarah said she knew it was time to "let go" of Duck after he stopped eating, and became skin and bones. She wrote:
I couldn’t figure out this hunger strike. Duck had never been political before.
I held him close [and] told him how loved he was, and thanked him for giving me such happiness and for his unwavering companionship and love ... Then finally, when his body lost its heat, and I could sense the doctor thinking about the imminent rush hour traffic, I handed him over ... 14 years. My longest relationship. My only experience of maternal love. My constant companion. My best friend. Duck.