Country star Miranda Lambert is mourning the loss of rescue dog Waylon.
In a heartfelt Instagram post, she shares the story of how she found him and what he meant to her. "Today I lost one of my best friends," she writes. "My old pal Waylon. I found him and his sister on the side of the road in Oklahoma in January 2008. They were abandoned, starving, and freezing nearly to death ... I took them straight to the vet and she told me that the little boy was not doing too well (malnourished and dehydrated) because whatever they had found to eat while they were homeless, he always let her eat first. He did that nearly his whole life. She said he probably wouldn’t make it but he did. For almost 13 years."
The sweet golden retriever was named after country artist Waylon Jennings, whose music Lambert was listening to when she found the pups. (His fur sister, Jessi, was named after Jessi Colter, who was also singing on the speakers at the time.)
She continues, "He was a rock in our family and always held down the fort. He lived his life with no fences. The way we all want to live."
Lambert has long been an animal advocate. In 2009, she and her mother Bev founded MuttNutt Foundation, a non-profit organization that benefits rescue animals and shelters. She also walks the talk, sharing an astounding 20 pets with husband Brendan McLoughlin in their Nashville home.
Waylon was apparently the world to her, and Lambert says that no words could do justice to what they shared. "We are heartbroken but happy that he is running across the rainbow bridge right now and will be waiting for us when we get there," she writes. "Dogs change your life. The bond is something that can’t be described unless you have lived it."