Tuesday, August 12, 2008

saying goodbye to our kind soul

2 of 3: Argus and the girlsWe arrived home with heavy hearts last night from our 13-day road trip to Canada.

Argus, our beloved Great Dane, passed away at the kennel in his sleep Saturday night.

I never did get that picture of him with our two chickens walking between his legs, so this picture will have to do to show just how friendly he was with our urban chickens (more perplexed by them than anything else).

I'm still trying to come to grips with his being gone, and with his passing while we were gone, away from him.

Argus was only eight years old (yes, that's old for a big dog, but still he came from a long-lived lineage), and he'd shown no signs of distress or discomfort anytime before our going on vacation. Yes, he was slowing down, but his appetite was as good as ever, and we'd just chased each other around the yard a couple days before we left. He loved the kennel he stayed at, and they loved him, too, so it's not as though he wasn't enjoying himself (he was, wasn't he?).

So Argus's passing came as a real shock, and hearing the news early on a Sunday morning in some distant, generic hotel room didn't make it any easier to hear.

Argus was (and always will be) a great dog all around, and I'm thankful for all the lessons he taught me in patience, in love and in compassion. He helped blow away all stereotypes I'd formed about big dogs and taught me the true meaning of a gentle giant. You can also read Left Coast Mom's tribute to Argus.

Today's a day of "dealing with the details" as we go to the kennel to handle the paperwork and then to the Humane Society to say one last goodbye.

I'll climb back on the chicken-blogging wagon a little later this week.

I'll miss you Argus, and I'll carry you in my heart, always.


Meryl said...

I don't know if you meant it this way or not, but the title of your post (*our* kind soul, as opposed to *a* kind soul). They really do become part of your soul, don't they?

So sorry for your loss....

Mrs. J. said...

I only added you to my rss reader about ten days ago, so this is the first post that showed up in my reader.
So sorry it's such a sad one.

Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. It strikes me as such a cruel irony that the non-human species with which we have bonded so completely has a far shorter lifespan than our own. Sad, sad, sad.

Emily Cole said...

I'm so sorry about your sweet dog. I know he's missed dearly. ((hugs))

Linda said...

How distressing and awful to be away from him at such a time! Even if they did live as long as us it wouldn't make losing them any easier. My condolences to you and your family.

CailinMarie said...

so very sorry. I'm missing my Mali as I read this and I'm quite 'there' with you. Wishing you many dreams of running through fields with your sweet giant

Kateri said...

I'm so sorry. He is a beautiful dog.

Granny Annie said...

My heart is hurting so for you and your family.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry! I love all of our dogs so much and can't imagine it happening while we are away. How hard for you all!

What an exceptionally gentle dog he was, especially around your chickens. Just amazing.

I heard a lovely thing once, that if there is a heaven we will be greeted at the gates by all the beloved dogs we ever owned. I hope that there is just for that!

My thoughts are with you!

Jeannine from Pittsburgh said...

I'm so very sorry for your loss. The kind souls that we take under our care do become part of our own souls. We lost our beloved cat Henry shortly after our 2-week vacation last year. Our cat/house sitter did all he could, but Henry's lymphoma decided to rear it's ugly head. Know that you gave Argus a happy life. What's the hardest is the space they leave behind. Our Henry came to us as a stray, and we already had (and still have) a most beloved cat Chester. Henry was a joy and a gift to us, and filled a space we didn't know was there, until he filled it, and then left far too soon. He's always with us, as I'm sure your Argus will be.

Here's a great saying that my sister has on her e-mails:

If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.
-Will Rogers

Unknown said...

Thanks everyone for your kind words. It means so much to hear comfort from you all, and you're certainly helping to kick-start the healing process.

Amazed (but not really) at just how much love and affection can develop between people and their pets, and how painful it is when the bond is broken.

I really appreciate your taking the time to react and respond and I'm blessed to have readers like you here on the blog. Thank you all.

Anonymous said...

My condolences go out to you and your family for your loss.

Anonymous said...

It's never easy losing a loved one, human or pet.

Thomas, we're sorry for your loss.


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