This will be hard to write. Our time together to make new memories together is coming to an end. All the memories we’ve made over the past 13 years- those are the things that make you you Ziggy, you loveable, quirky, and irreplaceable beagleherder, you. As hard as it is to say goodbye, buddy, it’s those memories that let us know this was the right decision- the only decision- as terrible as it feels. Soon you will be free to be your usual, goofy self again and get back to doing your favorite things.
These are a few of my favorite things, Ziggy, many of which weren’t a favorite at the time, but looking back, I’m going to miss:
- I’ve always wanted to sand and repaint the areas of the front window sill that you tore up while you barked maniacally at dogs, people, or nothing at all passing by. But I knew it would be wasted effort. I can’t count the number of times I had to put the lights back up there, and it’s a miracle they’ve made it as long as they have. Many panels of the curtains who intervened were not so lucky. I always said that when you were gone, I’d fix the windowsill. It’s going to be awhile before I can bring myself to do that while thinking of you there.
- Say hello to Homer for us and tell him we still think of him daily. The amount of time you spent “shepardizing” him – chasing him around and roughhousing while barking maniacally (I’m sensing a theme). When it was Homer’s time, though, you knew that just as well as we did, and left your friend at peace. Now it’s your time, and we want you to be at peace, friend. That picture of you as a tiny pup sleeping on the floor under the coffee table while Homer was asleep on the couch above you is priceless.
- Hedgie, Greenie, Trash Panda, and to a lesser extent, Sheeple, will all miss you. The care you took with your toys…ugh. Remember bringing Hedgie to sit next to you on the back of the couch as you stared out at the world together? And of course, you know where hedgehogs go, right? You know were the fuck they go: they go UP, and you would race up the stairs to catch him at the top of the landing. And why you insisted on bringing him outside with you every time we went is a mystery to me. Especially since you would never bring him back in, so we had to.
- Walks. You loved walks. We loved them a little less because we didn’t take the time to work on reactivity to other dogs with you. That said, we loved them because you loved them, and you were always happy while “going around.” I know we tried today, but soon you’ll be back seeing sights and smelling smells soon enough. And you won’t even need us to carry a plastic bag!
- You were always excited to greet your friends and make new ones, usually a little too excited. Especially if there was a fence between you and them. You loved the pizza guys, contractors, and everyone else you encountered. You were hard to separate sometimes, literally. May you make many new friends on the next journey of your walk. Just remember us old ones, okay?
- Playing the guitar to settle you down when you were restless…You were my biggest, and probably only fan. You can probably sing all the words to the songs you heard over and over again as I practiced them. I’m going to miss seeing you there, and playing is going to be hard for me for a while.
- The mornings and afternoons are going to be the hardest. To not hear those toes tippy-tapping up the stairs to be with us and your tail wagging and thumping on the floor when we wake you up to go outside, that’s going to be hard. Even the part where we try to convince you to come inside because we have to go to work will be missed. And when we get home from work – whether it’s the younger you barking the second the car is within sight that you heard getting out of the car, or the older you, slowly waking up and the tail starting to go as you realize we’re home. Yeah, that’s going to be the hardest part. You’ll be home soon, too, good boy.
I’m sure I could write more, but the words are getting harder to come by. This was as much therapy as it was a memoriam. Thank you for the time, love, and companionship you’ve given us, Ziggy. You are loved. This may sound a little cliche, but…The house will be very empty when you’re gone, but our hearts are fuller because you were here. Maybe one day we’ll get another, but we’ll never get another like you, you silly beagleherder. Dogs like you make us vulnerable, and it’s hard to be vulnerable. But without vulnerability life is shallow, so I guess we’ll eventually reopen the vulnerability department. But it will be awhile. And there will never be another, you, Ziglet. Go on now, be free, be yourself, and know you were always a good boy.