Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Farewell to Another Faithful Friend
The excitement and joy of my trip and homecoming were overshadowed a bit. The day after I returned home we had to say good-bye to our sweet dog, Hobo Jake. We found Jake in 1999, weaving in and out of traffic on Lucille Avenue. Dog lovers (suckers) that we are, we stopped and called him into our car. He wore a red collar but had no other identification. We went door-to-door for several days in the general area, asking about him. We put his description into every local vet clinic and shelter and radio station. Nobody claimed him. We had recently picked up and kept two other pups, and so we didn't feel we should take on another (Umm...there's a thought...) We boarded him at the vet clinic I worked at, and took him for occasional skijoring outings (That dog could FLY, and was very patient with me, even when we ran into the barbed wire on one occasion...) In the end, we brought him home for good. He taught us about boundaries and respect. He sang us to sleep at night (Did you notice he looks a bit wolfy? I do not condone that in the least, but hey--you read how we ended up with him.) with a deep, throaty howl that caused the hair to go up on our necks from sheer, wild beauty. He was by far the happiest and most content dog we owned...asking for very little and rewarding us with giant grins, copious kisses and fantastic speed shows (Not to mention the freakishly high, awe-inspiring, vertical leaps at dinner time.) He was tearing around with his pals and jumping for his dinner right up to the day he died. One evening he simply laid down in his pen and refused to eat. We brought him inside, and made a bed for him. I feel so blessed to have had that time to lie next to him, talk with him, sing to him, stroke his fur, and cry. He kept hiding his face from me; finally, he turned to me and looking me straight in the eyes, licked me tenderly with his last bit of strength. I knew he was saying good-bye. And so it went...the very most unpleasant part of being a pet lover. I wrote a similar "good-bye" post about 6 months ago. We have only three dogs left--a more "normal" number...but wow is it ever quiet out there.