I come from a family of dog lovers and grew up in a dog-loving rural culture. (One of my older friends, Lela Boggs Harper, always said, “Curt, don’t trust no one that doesn’t like dogs.”)
I have no problems with cats or even people who don’t share my great love of dogs. I’m just thankful that dogs are, and have been, a big and satisfying part of my life. I consider dogs a special gift to humans from God.
I’ve always heard that any man or woman who has had a faithful dog is rich. I’ve been privileged to have a handful of great dogs in my half-century of life.
But there are none I’ve loved more than Ivory.
That’s why burying Ivory this morning was so hard. She’d been my constant companion for over thirteen years. Although technically owned by my son Clint (who paid good money for her as a puppy) this white lab captured my heart early on and never let go.
“Putting a dog down” is never easy. Everyone but me agreed it was time, and I knew it too, but just had to get ready.
This morning I was as ready as I could get.
As I looked into her eyes, I believe Ivory was ready too.
She couldn’t walk any more and had lost most of her sight and hearing. Labs have the most intelligent and human-like eyes, and I could nearly sense her saying, “It’s OK. I’m ready.”
That didn’t stop the tears or how I felt inside. Dr. White and her staff were so kind. I shared how as a younger man, I’d always put dogs down with a gun, but there was no way I could do that with one of the best friends I’d ever had.
The injection worked so quickly and she just drifted off to sleep. I felt a great sense of relief, in spite of the loss.
I buried her in the front yard.
Maybe, it’s being a little sentimental but I plan to get a small grave marker.
What I want on it is simple but telling:
Best Dog I Ever Owned.
If blog readers will allow me, I’d like to blog dog stories this week. Several are about Ivory as well as other canines who’ve touched my heart. Check by the Creekbank for updates.
PO Box 332 Dry Creek, LA 70637