Saturday, May 10, 2014
A Boy And His Dog
OK~ It's been a tough couple of days. It's true, the hardest part of pet ownership is saying goodbye. Our beloved Wally turned 11 on May 3rd. He arrived in our home ten years ago at the age of one. He was a "dump off." This is what we refer to pets that are left to run in the country and end up on our door step. We were never able to connect him to his original owner and he quickly made himself at home.
That first year was rough, as he had been used to running. He would run for miles on end and then return home in a couple days. He arrived neutered, so that was not the reason he would run. Once he finally realized that he had a home where he could call home, he stayed. And let me tell you, Wally was one of the most loyal dogs a person could ever own.
I will also confess that he did drive me "crazy" when he would sneak into the barn to devour the cat food. It took me a few weeks to figure out why the cat food disappeared faster than usual. Once he knew I was onto his game, he made sure I did not see him enter the barn again. If he did, I missed it!
Easter Sunday, just a few days ago, he was chasing birds and running out into the field to bury his catch! He also walked down to the creek with the four of us, which was rare, on this day. It had been several years that all four of us actually walked down to our dogs favorite Iowa swimming hole. Wally walked with us, but it was quiet evident that it took everything out of him to do it.
His usual spot when Garrett would be coming home from high school was not to be missed for all of Garrett's high school days.
He aged really fast the last couple weeks, as more gray appeared around his mouth and on his feet. Wally slowed down, slept more, stopped eating and drinking, and basically told us that his time with us was up. He was ready to move on and run with Chester and Max, our two shelties that we previously owned.
We have so many fun memories. The skunk stories will live forever, as well as his desire to ride on the loader of the tractor. Wally loved to dig and it was quite common to find him digging a hole with dirt flying several feet in the air. He loved to hunt for gophers!
He would also wait for hours in this location!
He and Garrett were best friends! There is something to be said about a boy and his dog. A week before he passed away, Wally was struggling to walk. He literally drug himself up two flights of stairs and hopped onto Garrett's bed, his usual sleeping place. Garrett was not home, but he knew Garrett would be coming soon.
We will miss our loyal companion, but we know he is in a much better place. Skipper, Wally's companion for the past six years, is also sad today. He is on a hunger strike and trying to find his new "normal" around our house.
Life goes on and our family will find our new normal. Losing a pet is tough. They become part of our families and it's hard to let them go. Wally is back home here. Three generations buried him- Grandpa, Dad, and Son. He's lying right where all the critters love to run. There's something to be said about a boy and his dog. After All, It's All In a Mom's Day, Right?