Earlier this week our dear friend Lucca passed away.
We had the pleasure of getting know Lucca as Jim Higley contacted us for dog walking services. This was the summer of 2014. Chicago Urban Pets was still small, I was doing the majority of the work and I had 3 loyal sitters who I had just started hiring that past February.
I was excited to start walking Lucca when Jim had to be out of the house a handful of hours for work; we enjoyed walking to the park at North Ave and past the beautiful homes along the Gold Coast's Lakeshore Drive. Lucca was a peaceful walking partner but when we got to the park, I always held on to his leash a little extra as Lucca went nuts over the squirrels!!
As Chicago Urban Pets grew, I started walking Lucca less and less, enjoying his contagious smiles from afar when reading the updates from the sitters..
Two weeks ago.. Nov 17, I happened to walk Lucca myself for the first time in a long while.. not knowing it would be our last time together. Lucca was slower. There wasn't that spring in his step as we walked towards the elevator and I thought to myself I must be imagining things since it was a while I had seen him... Now I realize my gut was right.
I always wanted to hug Lucca all the time, and did so as we waited for the elevator.. while in the elevator.. and sporadically as we walked outside. He just had the positive energy radiating from his that makes you want to get up and close to and never let go of.
Jim Higley wrote a beautiful blog post about Lucca's last days and I am not surprised that Lucca held onto that good energy all the way to the end.
To commemorate Lucca, a few of our team members who have walked him shared memories of this amazing Golden Retriever
My moment with Lucca.
'There were many moments with Lucca. This precious pup knew me, or at least it's what I thought. My last day with Lucca was just another day. I came in with normal grunting, normal air biting, & normal Lucca. Lucca and I had our walk along the lake front, he looked so majestic along the water. We walked back and it wasn't really anything special. Back in the apartment Lucca and I sat on the ground and I had to explain to him that I'll see him later but it was going to be a long while. He decided to lay on the floor and I went along with him. We just had laid there for a few minuets (of course after this treat) and when I said my goodbye, Lucca gave me a giant smile. The Lucca smile. Something I'll never forget. The little moment with Lucca made my days, weeks, & months. This moment may not seem like the defining moment. I have so many more like when we would go to the park and his ears would shoot up when he would see a bird or when Lucca and I would play around in the apartment and he would collapse on the couch--ready for some belly rubs. There was never a bad moment. Never a moment I would ever take for granted. His love he had for everyone made them feel special, but I do think Lucca and my bond was special. Or at least I hope.
I'm so heart broken about this...
I didn't walk Lucca many times but whenever I did, he made my day great. I was always so so happy to get to walk him. His happiness, positivity and love for everything was a wonderful reminder to be happy with simple things in life. He always left me with a big smile and a ball full of love, and I'll carry it with me. He was a true companion and a great soul. I'm so sorry for your loss, but he will live on through all of us. He made a lasting impact on our community.
All the best,
I am so very sorry to hear about the passing of Lucca. I had the opportunity to walk him back in August and it was nothing but fun. He was so well behaved and sweet and never barked or pulled on the walk. He was always so excited to go out but once I grabbed the leash before we went out he would sit patiently and wait for me to put he leash on him. I enjoyed every minute walking Lucca. From arriving at the front door to giving him water before heading out, Lucca was nothing but a happy pup and it was definitely a highlight of my day seeing that photogenic smile and wagging tail.