Thursday, June 17, 2010
I hear his nails clicking on the hardwood floor. Making the trek to his water bowl. Always thirsty and lapping it up with such gusto. He could go on and on, until he finished the bowl. I can't tell you how many times I would replenish his bowl mid-drinking so that he had enough. Then it was sling some to the left and drool to the right as he left the bowl. Leaving a trail of puddles in his path. Even the "water-hog" mat we purchased did little to help.
I see his eyes engaged with excitement. Muscles tightening and total stillness in anticipation at the sight of a tennis ball. Frozen in place, barely breathing until the release of the ball in the air. A true retriever. Tongue wagging and a heavy, steady pant. He could go all day.
I hear him making his way across the house. A quick hello with his nose as he passed by the couch. Always up for a belly rub down or a good scratch on the head. Then circling once or twice, and dropping his body with a thud and a sigh on his soft, red bed. A big yawn, then slowly dozing off into dreamland with the occasional snore or bark in his sleep.
These are sounds that will stay with me.
Towards the end, his body started to fail him. His steps slowed and became more deliberate. Our walks became shorter and the ball stayed out in the yard. His big warm body, thinner and tired. He remained dignified and loving and held on as long as he could. A friend said to me… "Dogs are created in paradise and will be waiting for you in heaven." Waiting for us and watching over us the rest of our days. I know that is true with our big buddy. Yesterday evening, the sun began to fade, the temperature cooled and the farm grew still. We said goodbye to our old friend.
Cooper, Your devotion and friendship brought us an immeasurable amount of love. You were Trevor's best friend and you saved one another by your serendipitous meeting. We were blessed to have your companionship and feel your kind spirit daily. Always warming our souls with your eyes. Coop, I hope you are running through the grass, chasing a ball without a pain in your step or a care in the world… feeling blissful, young and free. We miss you more than I can say. You were our baby and our hearts feel very broken without you. xo