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Doggone dog gone

Well my Christmas season got off on a bit of a down note. This morning my 15 year-old German Shorthair Pointer, Addie, could no longer stand or walk so I took her to be euthanized. I felt like a candy-ass getting all choked up as I dropped her off. Still, she's been a loyal companion and faithful hunting partner for over a third of my life. It was sad to leave her with the vet but sadder seeing that once proud athlete reduced to a quivering lump on the floor.

Addie never really showed pain when she was hurt so I don't know if she was suffering too badly or not. I think I let her go the right amount of time. She was too old to hunt this season but got to ride along and hang with the other dogs. I'll really miss her in September when dove season rolls around. Then again when quail season opens. And one last time during duck season. Addie was truly versatile hunting dog. She put up with a load of shit from a first-time bird dog trainer/owner. She was a good dog.

Rather than wallowing in the present, I've been remembering some of the memorable trips we made together. Her first hunt when she saw another hunter shoot a bird about 300 yards away, jumped out of the bed of the pickup where we were riding, beat the hunter to the bird, brought the bird back then jumped over the bed rails back into the pickup to hand me the dove. Her first quail hunt, watching her slam to a halt on point and stay frozen like a statue until I shot and a bird fell. The time we kicked up a bedded-down deer, which she proceeded to chase down and tackle (I don't think she ever forgave me for not shooting that doe...). Shivering together in a duck blind - me from the cold and her from anticipating the next shot. Watching her quarter away for twenty or thirty miles in a day until she could hardly stand to eat, then ready to go again in the morning.

Oh, and the time she supposedly snatched a brisket off the smoker and ate half of it. To this day I still believe it was my buddy Brock who got into the brisket and threw the rest on the ground to frame the dog, but the only witnesses were after the fact. The barn cats were supposedly fearless when it came to food too. Addie got a bum wrap. Brock called her "Brisket" the rest of her life. Me thinks he doth protest too much.

Damn I'm going to miss that bitch. I plan to start looking for another German Shorthair after the first of the year but I'll never forget my first. So long Addie, you were a good girl.


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Comments (21)

Sorry to hear that, realizi... (Below threshold)

Sorry to hear that, realizing that there are idiots out there who'd say "It' JUST a dog".

I'm sorry for your loss too... (Below threshold)

I'm sorry for your loss too. We had a wonderful Bouvier - they're big Belgian cattle herding dogs. He was big and goofy and friendly and wonderful. We lost him 1 year ago and I still miss him.

It's tough, I know. I had ... (Below threshold)
Duane Dostie:

It's tough, I know. I had my long time cat companion of 15 or so years (Oj) put to sleep a few years ago. He was living at my mom's house and started acting funny...peeing on the stove, stuff like that. When he started sleeping in the litter box, I knew it was time. No cat of mine is going to sleep in no litter box. On the way to the vet, he started to perk up. I almost changed my mind, but I didn't. Immediately after the act, I felt as grounded and real as I have in many years. Nothing else mattered but Oj. I came to realize that by sleeping in the litter box, he was resigned to the ultimate multi-task, as he had lost control. Smart man that Oj.

Get another. Don't hesitate.


Sorry about your dog. My p... (Below threshold)

Sorry about your dog. My partner breeds German Shorthairs. I know how much she likes them. A puppy will cheer you up after the holidays. Good luck.

You have <a href="http://ww... (Below threshold)
I'm sorry for your loss; I ... (Below threshold)
BD Author Profile Page:

I'm sorry for your loss; I know Addie was part of your family & you will miss her terribly.

You're already on the right track, remembering the fun, silly, stupid stuff that happened over the years.

I lost my Great Dane Winston this year on Veteran's Day to congestive heart failure. His situation was similar - - - I'd watched him deteriorate & he finally got to where it was obvious he'd hung on long enough.

I remember things like the first time I saw him - he was maybe a foot long nose to the tip of his tail; bringing him home in the car; him freaking out in his new backyard when planes & helicopters from the nearby Air Force Base flew over; him sneaking upstairs when he was feeling lonely (I'd look at the stairwell and see these ears poke up over the landing ...).

He was a wonderful dog and I miss him.

My condolences to ... (Below threshold)

My condolences to you, Baron.

Dogs truly do leave paw prints on our hearts.

Baron,If it's any ... (Below threshold)


If it's any consolation, I know exactly what you're going through. I just put down my 13-year old dog, Toughie, a lab/retriever mix, this past Saturday morning. Tough was laid down while she was held by my wife and me. We're both just heartbroken, especially me since Tough was 'my' dog.

FWIW, you're not a candy-ass for getting choked up; you'd have to be a real heartless SOB not to .

I'm really sorry for your loss, Baron.

My dog is also 15 and it's ... (Below threshold)

My dog is also 15 and it's getting harder and harder for her to get around. It's pretty clear that this will be her last Christmas.

I'll let her gorge on her favorite biscuits.

Sorry to hear of your loss.... (Below threshold)
Reality Check:

Sorry to hear of your loss. I have two dogs, and I dread the day. I just dread the day.

God bless you, and when you are ready, open your home to yet another loyal friend.

YIKES!You hit a te... (Below threshold)


You hit a tender spot at a time of year when we do not need such....but it is something all we pet-lovers live. They simply do not live as long as do we.

I remember "Butch"...The English Springer Spaniel who led me through my formative years as a hunter in Illinois...

I recall so well "Bullet" the Cocker/Mix who then took over...

Now, my lovely Duchess and I have cats....and have had for years. Marmalade left us at 19 (really old); Bandit (named for his black eye patch) left us with diabetes and thyroid problems at 14; and now our old guy CJ is 14 and arthritic.....BUT we have Black Jackie, our small 16 week old kitten who is a female (neutered of course) and beginning to fit in nicely.

Love Pets....they make us fine companions and provide warmth and friendly-giving....


I have two nine to ten year... (Below threshold)
Eneils Bailey:

I have two nine to ten year-old Yellow Lab bitches out of the same litter.
I try not to think of that time when I might have to consider serious consequences for them.
It will devastate me to face that day and deal with their absence.
But you can bet your ass, that if I am faced with a life without the enjoyment of a pet(dog), it's time for me to call it in.

Baron,I am so very... (Below threshold)
Shawn Mallow:


I am so very sorry for your loss.

It sounds like you were both very lucky to have had eachother.

It's great that you'll be looking for another friend, as there are plenty who need kind owners.

Take care and Merry Christmas.

-Shawn Mallow

Getting an early sta... (Below threshold)

Getting an early start on my Christmas Eve celebrating, this post tugs at the heart.

So I raise my glass to ADDIE!!

Sorry for your loss BARON..take care

Losing a beloved animal is ... (Below threshold)

Losing a beloved animal is one of the hardest things we have to do in life, even when we know it's coming. I really feel sorry for those people who don't have an animal in their lives. They don't know what they are missing.

She'll be waiting for you "... (Below threshold)

She'll be waiting for you "up there".

I'd like to express my cond... (Below threshold)
Occam's Beard:

I'd like to express my condolences as well. We lost our beloved golden retriever, Bud, on Christmas Eve three years ago. A very sad Christmas indeed...

I had to give my GSHP a lon... (Below threshold)

I had to give my GSHP a long hug and tummy rub after that. Miss Molly is 8ish and still running wild.

I'm so sorry. Dogs are so ... (Below threshold)

I'm so sorry. Dogs are so hard to lose. My beloved pit boxer mix has had one knee surgery and is going to need the other knee done soon. It's made me all too aware of his mortality.

Just got back from a Christ... (Below threshold)

Just got back from a Christmas Eve party at our friends house. We've gotten together for 40+ years and most of the parties were at our house. All the older people remember our wonderful Brittany Spaniel and for some reason they wanted to talk about her tonight. Everybody had a story about Nikki and her tricks. I spent the night holding back tears. Dogs can be so special.

The Power of the Dog - Rud... (Below threshold)

The Power of the Dog - Rudyard Kipling

THERE is sorrow enough in the natural way
From men and women to fill our day;
And when we are certain of sorrow in store,
Why do we always arrange for more?
Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.

Buy a pup and your money will buy
Love unflinching that cannot lie
Perfect passion and worship fed
By a kick in the ribs or a pat on the head.
Nevertheless it is hardly fair
To risk your heart for a dog to tear.

When the fourteen years which Nature permits
Are closing in asthma, or tumour, or fits,
And the vet's unspoken prescription runs
To lethal chambers or loaded guns,
Then you will find - it's your own affair, -
But ... you've given your heart to a dog to tear.

When the body that lived at your single will,
With its whimper of welcome, is stilled (how still!),
When the spirit that answered your every mood
Is gone - wherever it goes - for good,
You will discover how much you care,
And will give your heart to a dog to tear!

We've sorrow enough in the natural way,
When it comes to burying Christian clay.
Our loves are not given, but only lent,
At compound interest of cent per cent,
Though it is not always the case, I believe,
That the longer we've kept 'em, the more do we grieve;
For, when debts are payable, right or wrong,
A short-time loan is as bad as a long -
So why in - Heaven (before we are there)
Should we give our hearts to a dog to tear?






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