Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Missing the Girl

It's been a sad week at Dipstick & Tiger's house. A week ago today, we had to say goodbye to our old girl Juneau. She almost made it to 14, which for a 120 pound dog, is some kind of miracle.

Although she wasn't very active in her last few years, she did love to go out for her daily walks in the park, come home and have a cookie.

Every day for 14 years, she's been there, a part of our lives. When she was young, we used to mountain bike or hike for hours, just to wear her out. As she got older, a sniff around the park seemed to satisfy her. Then she would sleep the day away, often snoring or running in her dreams.

She had her quirks for sure. Like she couldn't be in the car without a window open, or she would howl and whine. That trip to the Southwest in December a few years ago was quite frigid.

Juneau was a serious dog. An old soul, she often had a concerned look on her face. She was known as the sheriff of the park, because she would break up dog fights. Not that she didn't start a few of her own, back in her youth. She would always come and nuzzle you if you were crying and was very protective of her cats.

She loved the snow. And digging in my garden. And babies and children. And could that girl sing!

She was terrified of fireworks, so every Fourth of July, we would pack up and go camping, just to get her away from them. She loved to run and play in the water, but didn't like to swim. When I would dive in and swim away from her, she would pace on the shoreline and howl and bark the most pathetic, concerned bark, until I came back. Every once in a while, she'd swim out after me, trying to round me up and coax me back to shore.

There was the time we took her on a whale watch and both she and Tiger got sea sick. And as she got older, she started to lose her hair, a condition the vets didn't know how to treat. It made her look ragged, but she didn't seem to notice, her once beautiful, full tail looked like a muskrat's.

She never liked to snuggle, but as she got older, she let us lavish her with love. The first thing I would do when I woke up in the morning was to give her a kiss on her muzzle and tell her how much I loved her. The house feels so empty without her here.


Salty said...

Hi Dipstick, I'm sorry for your family's lost. My dog was a beagle mutt. Lady liked listening to Melissa Etheridge music loud, it got her moving. She also liked to sing and was scared of fireworks. The Animal Shelter wanted to kill her because she had a growth on her side, but the Vet said she probably wouldn't survive the surgery because of her age. I had to go to court to get my dog back and the Vet testified on my side. When she returned home, she was so quiet because she didn't know what she had done to be taken away. After I started playing with her and started making howling sounds to let her know it was okay that she was home, she was happy again. I lost her a year later, she was about 15, but she passed at home with her family. Sorry about the length of this, but your post was so nice and reminded me of my bowwow. Dang, I'm tearing up after 3 years.

Lipstick said...

Dip, hang in there. Juneau was so loved and will be missed by many. She was such a good old girl!

Alana Noel Voth said...

Sorry about your pooch. :-(
I've been there. Peace, A

Anonymous said...

Kathy when I saw the photos I couldn't believe it was Juno, it wasn't the Juno I knew but she was an incredible dog and will always be in both your hearts. JP

Unknown said...

Sending my thoughts, support and love to you and's never easy to say goodbye. The love and incredible memories of her, no doubt, will be cherished forever :) Take great care!

Tinkerteam said...

Oh, sweet Juneau. I have many sweet memories of her ... like driving her up to the snow when she was a pup and throwing snowballs for her. And Juneau getting feisty whenever C showed up because she knew there was roughhousing in the offing.

C & I send you and Tiger loving thoughts.