Sorry MC... it's something any one that was lucky enough to have the gift of a dog in their life knows ... the goodbyes leave the soul saddened. I have shed more tears over dogs deaths then people deaths that have come through my life.. good reason for that is dogs unlike people will give 100% of themselves... why? for which purpose?.. because of the sheer joy it brings to their hearts.. they ask for little in return for the happiness they bring into our days. Food, water, shelter, and companionship is all they seek... BUT if you add love to that they will give back things our minds would never imagine.
Some say you can tell if a person is good by the way they treat an animal... but if you really want to tell if a person is good watch how a strange dog they never met treats them.. Dogs see past our exterior fronts and see into our souls.
I'm the same way about losing dogs vs losing people, Rhino.
I like to look at people's dogs to see what kind of person they are.
The dog will certainly reflect what his owner puts out.
It's like a sixth sense they have, they read us very well and I sometimes believe they actually/literally feel the vibes we put off.
The cues they see/hear, the scents they pick up alone don't seem enough the way I've had some react to me.
It has to be some sort of magnetic/electrical field we give off as I've had one come right up to me, the morning my mother passed
and place his chin on my leg, as we/family sat outside the nursing home, just taking the moment in.
I'd never seen the dog, Border Collie mix, before but, he was there comforting me as if he'd just been in the room with us at mom's end.
I stroked his head/back and he just remained still there with me until it was time to go and then wandered back into the neighborhood.
I've had other similar incidents just like that with other dogs.
They are certainly special creatures and we're lucky to have them around.