Letting go

Everyone deserves to have one truly outstanding dog sometime in their lives. For us this dog was Beau – our 100lb yellow lab. Beau was a truly sweet dog.  It’s hard to describe what this really means to those who never met him, but Beau was gentle despite his size and sweet in a way that sets him apart from all of the other dogs we’ve known.  His favorite pastime was to present people with a series of toys (typically stuffed bones and animals) when they walked into the house while vigorously wagging the entire back half of his body – just before making several laps between their legs.  Much to our amusement and unlike most labs, Beau didn’t enjoythings like swimming (which he never learned to do), hanging out outside (when we would leave the door to the back open, he would sit just inside the house – choosing to be inside rather than out) or fetching a ball (he preferred to watch as you retrieved the ball yourself, jumping up and down upon your return in an attempt to egg you on to once again throw the ball so he could watch you retrieve it). His   great pleasures were the hikes we all took together and sleeping(preferably on a sofa or futon).  He was a good companion to our other dog, Rosie, and the two would sleep together on the same doggie bed – spooning each other through the night.  He had this funny habit of cocking his head  to the side when you would talk to him – turning almost completely sideways the more you raised the pitch of your voice.  My wife used to joke that if he could talk, he would have a Barry White voice – very deep, but kind and soft.  We would often talk in this voice for him around the house (as in “I could not possibly eat another piece of hamburger . . . well, on second thought maybe I could”).  She gave him an appropriate Barry White-esque theme song in St. Germain’s Sure Thing– and would joke about the things he would do in his music video to that song. Beau had endless patience wit  children. First with our next door neighbor’s daughter (who would sometimes fall asleep when we were watching her using Beau’s stomach as a pillow) and then with our daughter, who would use Beau as a jungle gym – climbing over him, pulling his ears and tail, pretending to ride him like a horse, or kissing him on the head. Beau loved the attention and would lie with his tail wagging, tongue out, smiling doggie-style.
Beau died yesterday at the age of 14.  He was a good boy . . .

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  • John

    I’m sorry to hear of your loss. Beau sounds like he was a wonderful boy. He had 14 wonderful years with you, and he’ll always be with you. Peace.

  • Paul

    So sorry to hear about Beau. Hang in there, Seth.

  • We lost our ol’ timer a couple of years ago too. We truly feel your pain. And we also have an aging beagle who is showing those saddening signs.
    Everyone does deserve to have an outstanding dog. We’re lucky in that we have had two, but the pain after they are gone will probably prevent me from having another.

  • tough losing a good companion like Beau. I lost a 16-year old Golden female a few years back…tough time for me.
    Hang in there…Beau finished his work here.

  • Hey Seth, I am sorry to hear about your Beau. My first dog was named Beau too and when he passed away I was heartbroken. It is certainly like losing part of the family. I hope the pain of loss is replaced with all of the good memories soon!

  • Its worse than losing a person… b/c dogs are better than most people.
    I went through this last year, and since then, I get these random people finding my post and leaving their dog stories on there who are going through the same thing. Its a heartfelt read:
    http://www.thisisgoingtobebig.com/2005/03/my_dog_died_.html
    Turns out that if you google “My Dog Died” I’m the third link… its interesting to see how much people want to reach out to others when losing a pet… even if its someone they never met. My heart goes out to you and your family.

  • Very sorry to hear that. My condolensences to you and your family.

  • CKE

    I don’t know your religion or your views of an afterlife. But I can assure you that when the time comes, there will be a waggy-tailed dog named Beau waiting for your when you die. And he’ll be barking crazy happy and mad, wanting to know what took you so long.

  • I’m so sorry about Beau. I got a bit emotional while reading. I have my first dog and I don’t know what I’d do if something ever happened to her. Beau sounds like he was a very loved and happy member of your family. You have my sincere sympathy.

  • Anne Schardt

    It’s not atypical for me to thank someone for a morning grin, but in this case I have to as well add my thanks for this morning’s weep. Your admiration and love for Beau and his unique ways radiated from your description, and although its ending was no surprise, it hit me hard. Following 30 dogless years of university and living overseas, a year ago we adopted our “shepherd mix”, Mystique, who is also such a character…

  • Gerard Guarneri

    I am seeing this sometime later. It is so sad. God bless Beau. He is in doggie heaven with my Rastus, Alfonso, Roo, Cleo and Snoopy. I know they are having fun and don’t need to watch out for cars or worry about where they poo…lol!

    • lol indeed!

      • Sarah

        A beautiful tribute to your friend!