Our time together was definitely short but sweet. Couldn't have asked for a better puppy.
For those of you curious, the story of Eero passing was (and still is) a bit of a mystery. Angie and I went to the grocery store one Sunday morning and left Eero outside on his leash in the yard. When we arrived home, around an hour later, the first thing I noticed was his collar, still attached to his leash, lying in the yard. This was the first alarm that something was wrong. The last time he got loose, he did what any faithful dog would do and just waited by the door until I returned home. Anyway, we immediately jumped out of the car and started calling for him. As I walked around the corner of the house I turned and saw him lying in the corner next to the back door. He didn't move a muscle when I ran up to him, but his eyes were open and he was able to look at me. He was breathing, but it was pretty clear that he didn't have much time left. The only thing that I could think of was a possible heat stroke so I immediately carried him to the garden hose to hose him down and try to get his temperature back down. If I had calmed down to think about the situation I would have immediately ruled that out considering the temperature that day (still warm, but not near hot enough to cause heat stroke in one hours time). After hosing him down and a few minutes of trying to cool him down inside, he stopped breathing. I then started CPR and we contacted a local emergency animal hospital. He gave a couple grunts and twitches during the CPR, but never fully recovered. We rushed to the animal hospital as quickly as possible, but he never started breathing again. The nurses at the hospital weren't able to give a definitive cause of death. They did however bring up the point that he may have found a mushroom or mole killer in our yard or a nearby neighbors yard and ingested it.
It's tough not knowing what happened to him, but we're glad we could see him (and he could see us) before he passed. One thing we've learned is to simply be aware of what is in our yard. Hopefully, this story can help others out there be more wary of things that may not cross their mind. And even more importantly, be an example of how quickly pets can be taken away. They're loyal little (or sometimes big) creatures and basically worship the ground you walk on. Don't forget that.