We got a dog a couple weeks after you left us. I always said I would do it, but it turns out that the shelter got a dog that we weren't allergic to on the day of your funeral. His owner died, and the family didn't want him. I saw him the Sunday when he became available, and brought him home the same day. Our girl tried to get him to sleep with her but he started following me around immediately. Plus...he's 9.5 years old. He used to cry when I left, but he's better now. He sleeps with me, loves walks and car rides, and wishes he had access to food all the time. He's also partly the same breed as one of the dogs I had when we were first dating.
Since he loved me so much (or, you know, had shared trauma), our girl wanted her own dog. So I looked around for a puppy for her. I found one near where my sister lives - we went to visit them for my niece's graduation and picked up the dog then. He was an adorable black mop - the same breed that your oldest sister has. Hers is white, and our little guy seems to be slowly turning white. He's hilarious and pounces on his toys.
We took them to my other sister's house for our annual visit. There were a few fights, but mostly everyone got along pretty well.
I wish you would have agreed to get a dog. Old man would have followed you around instead of me. Little man would have snuggled up to you and made you laugh. They would have got you out and about going for walks. They also have made messes and cost me lots of money. But it's worth it.
The floors are holding up OK. Maybe there are some scratches. And Old man scratched up the bathroom door when I left him locked in. I painted most of what he tore up, so you can't even see it. Little man keeps destroying clothing - mostly underwear. But they're both so worth it.