My dog Tony (Antonio) was given to us when he was 10 weeks old. One of our neighbors had two picks from a litter of Cane Corsos, he gave one to his son and offered my mom and I the other one since his career obligations made it impossible to have pets. My mother brought him up to my grandmother's apartment when she picked me up. I thought it was a joke, we weren't allowed to have dogs on the farm where we lived, but it wasn't, he was ours. I was only 11 and I don't remember much from Tony's puppy days but I can sum them up in one word, perfect. Tony was perfect, he didn't chew, or bite, or use the house as a little box. From day one it was hard to believe there was time when we didn't have him. He was my best friend. When I first went off to college I was skyping with my mom and Tony was lying on the floor, the minute I started talking perked up and ran to the computer, happier than any person I know would be, to see me. Spring semester finals week of my sophomore year I got the call. My mom had to take Tony to the vet after she found some blood in his vomit. His diagnosis was lung cancer but it was in the early stages and the vets just wanted to keep him for the day to run tests and see if it spread anywhere else. I came home later that day, expecting him to already be home sleeping on the couch, but he wasn't there, the vet hadn't called. By dinner time we started to get worried and placed a call to the vet. As my mom was on the landline the vet's office called her cell. Tony wasn't breathing when they went to check on him, and they were trying to resuscitate him. By the time we got to the vet he was gone. They put us in the comfort or "discomfort" room to be with him. After my mom had her moment I asked her to leave, she was offended slightly, but understood. When she left I broke down. It wasn't fair, he was fine that morning when I left to take my finals and now he was lying limp on the table. To make things even worse he died alone in a metal kennel. Our dog, who had given us so much, died without us. The vets were just as stunned as we were he was only 8 and seemingly healthy, they tried to come up with reasons, they recommended an autopsy but we decided against it. He was gone, and knowing what killed him wasn't going to bring him back. We buried his body under a tree on the farm, deciding that since that was the only place he ever lived, he should rest there. Now when I think about Tony, I like to think about how amazing it is that some of the best things in life just fall into our lives unexpectedly and change them forever.