18th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest People
The last nuzzle

When I first met Gustav, I picked him up, he looked up at me, and nuzzled my face. I knew right then, I wanted to bring him home. For 12 years, Gustav was the best companion. He went through so many life events and transitions with me and was always by my side- ready with snuggles and affection. He had such love for me, and for everyone who ended up in my present family unit. That day, I held Gustav and even though he was incredibly sick, he looked back up at me one more time. I nuzzled him, told him I loved him, and gave him kisses. Gustav was euthanized shortly after.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 07.2020
Date Uploaded: 09.2020
Photo Location: Lester Prairie, MN, Minnesota, United States of America
Copyright: © Marla Khan-Schwartz