I know a lot about dogs; I know nothing about being a widow. Dogs cannot, of course, entirely fill a huge space emptied by the sudden loss of a partner of 40 years. They can, however, definitely help, especially at night when they cozy up in bed, back-to-back with you, to warm the heartbreakingly vacant other side of your bed, which has never been quite so cold and unfathomably lonely as now, in your certain knowledge that its owner will never return.
One of my older dogs even snores quite loudly, a former annoyance I now find quite comforting; almost as soothing as three shots of Jack Daniels and a nice back rub: I am not alone. Yes, dear God, bless all my good dogs, and thank you, Lord, for their sweet and unquestioning love.