Yesterday morning, I was getting ready for work when my dog Cocoa suddenly got sick.

I feel lucky that I was running 10 minutes late. I wouldn't have been there for her if I had been on time. She had a horrible seizure that finally subsided 20 minutes or so after it started.  God love my husband, Tom, for waking up and calming Cocoa. This was her third episode and she usually goes blind and deaf briefly. Tom's touch seems to quiet her.

I never imagined when I got her that Cocoa's care would require such a level of responsibility. Granted she came with allergy medicine. She sneezed a lot! Other than the vaccines and her tags, she was easy to deal with. But, she was only a pup.

At 6 years old, she had 9 stones removed.  They looked kind of like Kix cereal. Oh, and she had a pet sitter while I was at work.

A little over a year ago, she had her first seizure.  I was scared to death. She shook and fell over, lost control of her body functions and was eerily quiet. I called the emergency vet, who basically told me that these things happen as dogs get older and it could be a stroke or seizure. I was to keep watch for more of them.

Now I realize that being a pet parent is something you don't do lightly. Just like with a child, you have to feed, bathe, doctor, teach, and discipline your pet. There are little things you need to learn like the fact that pets do have allergies. And sometimes they need medicine.And always, always remember to not take them for granted. More than anything, they need love.

It is an investment that I wish more people would consider before they go into this commitment ill prepared. We'd have less pet shelters.

Cocoa is fine today. I scruffed her belly and hugged her before leaving for work. She is worth the commitment!