Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Good dog

Here's to you, Claire.

I remember the day I first saw you. Your amber eyes reminded me of a wolf, and we gazed at each other through the glass of the kennel window, mesmerized.
I remember the day we brought you home; you were so excited that you tore up the stairs before we could catch you, and took a running leap from the stairwell right onto the nice oak kitchen table.
I remember the way you would chase squirrels so relentlessly that you ripped your own toenails trying to follow the little bastards up the tree in the backyard.
I remember when we first taught you bow, and shake, and beg, and sit, and down.
I remember how you'd never bark at dogs passing on the street until they were past the property line, as if to say, "and don't come back!"
I remember how ecstatic you'd become whenever one of us would ask if you wanted "to gofer." Ride in the car, walk, it didn't matter. You'd knock us down the stairs if we weren't careful.
I remember how adept you were at removing bandages from your leg. And how you shed so much, we would joke that we could make a whole new dog.
I remember the days when you were so lazy, you'd take up half the couch and refuse to move to let us watch TV.
And I remember the day my Mom told me you had cancer, and had to be put down.

"We long for an affection altogether ignorant of our faults. Heaven has accorded this to us in the uncritical canine attachment."
~ George Eliot

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