By Katie Klein Special to Published Jul 30, 2011 at 8:34 AM

Dear Bailey,

Thirteen years ago, I came home from college one evening to see your tiny little face staring at me as I walked through the kitchen. I never imagined just how much you would teach me about life.

You were there when organized chaos surrounded life – from college, to a career, to new life challenges; you were there for me, even if I no longer lived at home.

You knew you had our family wrapped around your white paw and loved every minute of it. Your adventurous soul took you climbing over our yard fences and hauling ass down the sidewalk, us running behind trying to catch you. We saw you look back and laugh at us with your toothy grin and ears flopping in the wind.

You meant so much to our family; it's impossible for me to put it into words. Keeping Dad safe in the woods while scoping out tree-stand locations, you fought off raccoons and other varmints that dared to come close. Lying on the deck with Mom watching the hummingbirds and keeping an eye out for squirrels, while she sipped her morning coffee or evening martini. Giving little bro a fair and not-so-subtle warning that you were hiding in the flowerbed waiting for rabbits, and he should keep on walking by. Hogging tiny bro's futon after a night of drum practice, keeping your legs, as straight as can be stretched across the bed, so he couldn't get a slice of his own mattress.

You were the duct tape that kept a family growing older and moving in different directions – together.

Last year when you got sick, I decided to share you. I shared you with my community of online folks on Twitter who without knowing you, sent prayers and good thoughts your way. They watched out for you, while watching out for me. They displayed acts of kindness to a stranger they had never met, without thinking twice. Close friendships became even tighter when my friends would reach out and check up on you and me at all times of day. They helped me, help you. I was, and still am privileged to have such an amazing support network that spans the globe.

Last week, I knew in my heart of hearts that the time where I would ultimately have to say goodbye was drawing near. Only this time, I knew I wouldn't be able to rub your ears, kiss you on the top of the head and remind you that I love you and would see you in a few days. I knew. When I saw you lying under one of your favorite trees in the yard, I knew you were at peace.

You are no longer suffering. You are now in a place where you can be free of pain, free to run and let your spirit soar.

In my quiet time since you've passed, I am reminded by what you left me with. You taught me what it means to be loyal. You were right by my side without judgment and without fail, no matter how I may have stumbled. You still loved me endlessly. You reminded me that loyalty is often forgotten or neglected in life – and is so very important to building meaningful relationships. I will do my part to change that as much as I can.

Rest in peace, my sweet puppy. You will never be far from my mind and heart.

Katie Klein Special to

Some may call her a digital wizardess. Others may call her a bolt of snark ready to strike. But we like to call her Katie. All ninjas must have a day job, and hers is with advertising agency Boelter + Lincoln in the Third Ward. As "BootyP," her wit, criticism and comedic banter have lit up the Twitter world in Milwaukee - and now she's attacking the blogosphere. Her faithful followers know her no-BS approach to most any topic.

Her snarky-yet professional personality makes her a must-read, must-know person in this city. You can find her 14,500 feet in the air, or walking down the street in a pair of stilettos with a yoga mat strapped to her back.

Want to bribe Katie? Best to deliver massive quantities of Diet Coke, candy (gummy candy more specifically), tea and music her way.