Saturday, June 2, 2012

Another Diligent Canine Gone West

Ashley, firehouse Dalmation, and loyal family pet has passed away. Dad called me last night with the news, breaking down in tears.  She was  always a good family pet, affectionate and quietly loyal, a great companion to Dad after my stepmom passed away.  He took her for a walk every day, and she would not rest unless she was in the same room as he.

I see pictures of her on the deck, where we were in our lives when the last photos above were taken, who was around us, and it hits home again.

Everything is so fleeting.  You say goodbye to those you love with all that you have and you don't know if you will ever see them again.  Each sunset is a question, each dawn is a gift.

Pet the family dog, annoy the family cats, tell someone you love them and instead of leaving a comment here, just say a short prayer for my Dad.

Til later. .


  1. Brigid,

    I'm sorry for both you and your father on this one. I know the feeling of losing a long-time loyal friend, and a good dog is that like nothing else. Prayers for your dad on this one. When you talk to him next, please give him my regards as I feel that I know him and have come to admire him through your posts.

  2. My prayers and thoughts are with you and your Dad.

  3. I'm sorry for his loss, and yours.
    Prayers for all.

  4. Prayer said.
    My condolences on the loss to both of you.

  5. Sorry for your loss, I know it hurts, I had to hold my pet while the vet. give him his shot. He was in a lot of pain but it still hurt and I still miss him

  6. Sorry to hear that. Some small solace maybe..

    This is stolen from Castle of Argghhh!, I think. So sorry for your loss.

    Fiddler's Green is a wide space on the road to hell, where there is a pub of endless capacity, where there is mirth everlasting, beer ever-flowing, good eats, dancers who never tire - and, most importantly, our brothers and sisters in arms, whether they fell in battle or to the ravages of fate and entropy.

    Halfway down the trail to Hell,
    In a shady meadow green
    Are the Souls of all dead troopers camped,
    Near a good old-time canteen.
    And this eternal resting place
    Is known as Fiddlers' Green.

    Though some go curving down the trail
    To seek a warmer scene.
    No trooper ever gets to Hell
    Ere he's emptied his canteen.
    And so rides back to drink again
    With friends at Fiddlers' Green.

    And so when man and horse go down
    Beneath a saber keen,
    Or in a roaring charge of fierce melee
    You stop a bullet clean,
    And the hostiles come to get your scalp,
    Just empty your canteen,
    And put your pistol to your head
    And go to Fiddlers' Green.

    There's a wide place on the road to Hell where warriors stop to sit a spell.
    They wet their whistle and rest a bit before Satan rings the closing bell,
    they then ruck up and go to Hell.

    This place is called Fiddler’s Green.

    Some clever Sergeant built a bar, then stuck the bell inside a jar.
    Then working with a clever Warrant, they sucked the air out in a torrent.
    No one can hear that cursed bell.

    Now warriors never go to Hell.

    They rest and wait at Fiddler’s Green, hanging with soldier, sailor, airman, Marine.
    They talk shit at the bar, hands low and high, for “There I was about to die…”
    Or at the tables, eating pie.

    But somehow no one hears the bell, at that wide place on the road to Hell.

    On the other side of that road to Hell, there is a green and leafy dell.
    It’s reached by a tunnel that goes under the road.

    This place is called Piddler’s Green.

    Fire hydrants everywhere, lots of toys and the scent of kibble fills the air.
    The mice are fat, sassy and slow, always a warrior with a Frisbee to throw.
    A knotted rope for tug-of-war and tennis balls by the score,

    And always, always a warrior who wants to play, until your own warrior comes, on that sad/glad day.

    As most surely he will.

    No one minds if you cross the path, and take a nap and not a bath.
    You can always swipe a scrap from a table, every warrior there's watching sports on cable.
    There's ear skritches, face skrunches and bellyrubs aplenty.

    Most important –and mark this well – for only you can hear The Bell.
    The Bell that rings not for Hell, but the one that rings and makes you yell,
    and causes your heart to swell with joy.

    The one that says your warrior has come, the one that says you can be at peace.

    So my friend who has four feet and is gifted with that special sight,
    at that wide space along the road there are two clearings, left and right.
    One's a bar, the other a glen, and no one spends a lonely night not knowing if much less when.

    For just over there, when the moon is just right, is a place on the corner where you can catch a sight... of your warrior, asleep at night.

    ‘Tis the Watching Place.

    So you know that they are safe, and if they should stir, oh, just a bit,
    it's because a tongue, ever so gently, on their cheek just alit.

  7. Sorry to hear. We had 2 cats pass 2 years ago it was hard on the family.
    We went out and found 2 more and added a third. All 3 are spoiled already.

  8. Your father has my sincere sympathies.. Losing a beloved companion is never, ever easy.

  9. All our prayers for you, your Dad and Ashley....We lost our beloved Tessa and Spooky a few months apart earlier this year. Dale, our black lab has been the one who helped us deal with the loss....

    This poem has been my way of dealing with the loss...we will see them again when all sorrow and tears will end .


    She is my other eyes that can see above the clouds;
     my other ears that hear above the winds.
    She is the part of me that reaches out into the sea.
    She has told me a thousand times over that I'm
    her reason for being.
    by the way she rests against my leg; 
    by the way she thumps her tail at my smallest smile;
     by the way she shows her hurt when I leave
    without taking her.
    I think it makes her worry when she is not along
    to care for me.

    When I am wrong, she is delighted to forgive.
    When I am angry, she clowns to make me smile.
    When I am happy, she is joy unbounded.
    When I am a fool, she ignores it.
    When I succeed, she brags.
    Without her, I am only another person. 
    With her, I am all powerful.

    She is loyalty itself.
    She has taught me the meaning of devotion.
    With her, I know a secret comfort and a private peace. 
    She has brought me understanding where before
    I was ignorant.

    Her head on my knee can heal my human hurts.
    Her presence by my side is protection against my fears 
    of dark and unknown things.
    She has promised to wait for me, whenever, wherever
    in case I need her.
    And I expect I will, as I always have.

    She is just my dog.

  10. Rob is onto something. perhaps you should get another dog for your dear, sweet Dad. i had a gorgeous tabby for most of my adult life - she died after giving birth to two kittens. when that happened - i didn't want the kittens. but having them helped ease my grief. and now, whenever i lose a pet, i get another immediately. this may help your sweet Dad with his grief. just a thought for you to consider from someone who is just trying to help ease the grief.

    i am very sorry for your and your Dad's pain. i will definitely say a prayer for him. your friend,

  11. Very sorry for the loss to the family. We lost our Rocky , last month 17 and half years old and Our Duke 1 and half years ago, the tears still come , but more pleasant memories than sad, they live on forever in our hearts.

  12. My sympathy to your family. Our pets take parts of our hearts when they go, but they enrich us while they are with us.

  13. Prayers and thoughts for your dad. Please let him know how sorry we are for the loss of his furry companion.

  14. Sorry to hear about your loss to both yourself and your dad

  15. I am so sorry to hear of your and your Dad's loss. I think Kymber is right. Having another life to care for will help keep him going.

  16. I'm sorry to hear of your family's loss. I'm sure your dad is saddened by the loss. He seems like the sort to pick up the pieces and carry on, though, so I wouldn't be surprised if he wants to get another dog fairly soon.

  17. Prayers and thoughts to you and your Dad. Losing a loving pet is so sad and the memories will last a lifetime.

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  19. Thank you everyone. Dad is doing a bit better today. My Mom died in early June and my Stepmom died June 15, 2010 so the timing on this was just really wrong.

    I popped out for a weekend not too long back and will take a week's vacation and go see him next month. I have a brother close so he has company every weekend which will help. But thank you for your concern, and your prayers.

  20. I'm sorry to hear that... Daisy is my parents dog... laid next to my dad almost every minute of his last few days of life last year... she's now my mother's primary companion, including daily walks...

    We'll be praying for your dad... and thankin' God for our dogs, family, and friends...

    Dann in Ohio

  21. I knew a Dalmation (damnation) named Ashley--she died last year. I highly approve of dogs and generally dogs highly approve of me. Ashley was fiercely devoted to her person but had absolutely no use for me. At the very best she considered me her automatic door knob turner when she wanted to go outside.

    I am glad your father was on the receiving end of that devotion. I am sorry for the loss of a family friend.


  22. Most importantly, very glad you still have your father and he has you.

  23. Hope your dad finds it in his heart to offer the now vacant spot to another needy pet. I'll bet your dad would benefit as much as the homeless animal.


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