We'll Miss You, Buck, Old Buddy!

This picture is a perfect example of how wonderful Buck was with our children.
Here he is with our Kindergartner who wasn't quite one at the time of the picture.

Ten and half years ago, my boyfriend (now my husband) and I had just returned from Montana where we had both worked for the summer. I had it in my head that I wanted a dog. So, before even unloading our stuff, I looked in the paper and found a yellow lab. Perfect!

Tony drove me to the home where the dog lived. We walked up and saw some kids playing and asked if they were selling their dog. The kids looked at us like we were crazy. Apparently, the parents hadn't told them they were selling the dog. Oops!

After talking to the owner and reassuring him that I could give him a good home, he seemed content to let me have him. I paid $100 for him. To this day, Tony and I still argue about who bought him. He lived with me and my roommates so surely, I bought him, right? Right, Tony?

Before we took him away, the owner told us that the main reason he was getting rid of the dog was because he ran away a lot. I figured I'd just have to keep an eye on him. No big deal. So, we loaded him into to Tony's car on top of all our summer stuff.

The dog was named Buck and I took him home to the house I rented with some other girls for my last year of college. It ended up that I wasn't the only one who wanted a dog. That year, four girls and three dogs lived in one house!

Buck was a great dog and I can remember sitting in one of my classes the day after I bought him thinking that it must be some kind of dream that I now owned a dog. I'd always wanted one, but only got to have one for about three months while I was growing up.

I attempted to take Buck for runs, but quickly learned that labs are more into fetching than they are into long distance running, so I took him for walks and threw plenty of tennis balls. Tony also spent a lot of time with him and liked him quite a bit!

It's a good thing that Tony liked Buck, because almost a year later Tony and I were married.

Tony moved to another state before we were married. Obviously, I eventually joined him. Of course, Buck came with me. In order to join him, we had to drive across the state of Kansas in an old Toyota Celica with NO air conditioning. Buck rode beside me panting the entire way. It was so hot that the only thing I stopped to eat was an ice cream cone!

Tony was waiting for us and said he knew when we were coming because he heard Buck's collar jingling!

Wherever we were, there Buck was. He took several road trips with us and I have many memories of him looking out from the back of a Ford Focus hatchback. ( We weren't too nice about letting him ride in our mini van because of the dog hair he constantly shed.) He even visited the arch in St. Louis with us.

He probably thought he was in heaven when we moved to Arkansas and lived across from a field. Tony would take him over to the field to play fetch with him. After three years in Arkansas, his age was showing. Fetch was starting to be a thing of the past, though he would still eagerly chase flashlight beams.

While we were in Arkansas, our first two children were born. We couldn't of asked for a sweeter dog. We have pictures of all the children on top of him. He didn't mind one bit. I do suppose he was a little relieved when we stopped bringing babies home every year and a half once we had our third and final baby.

By the time our third little one was born, we had moved back to the same state we started married life in and Buck was beginning to slow down quite a bit.

Aside from all the shedding and one rather expensive tooth extraction, he was the best dog. He even managed to almost win over a friend who is terrified of dogs. I don't know that she ever really liked him, but she at least wasn't scared of him!

As we got busy with the kids, we tended to give him less attention leading to some guilt on our parts. Still, he had it made. Three young children mean you get lots and lots of table scraps. In fact, he got so many that he could be choosy about what they offered him. As he got older, we got more and more lenient on what he could have. Lucky dog!

He continued to slow down and started losing a lot of weight. It was the beginning of the end.

On Sunday, we made the tough decision to have Buck put to sleep. Something had changed and we couldn't let him suffer.

Tonight, Tony took him to the vet and held him as Buck left for good.

You know, I never really understood how people could grieve a pet so much. After all, it isn't a person, right? True, but Buck was part of our family and he was part of what made our home, home.

We'll miss him. Thanks Old Buddy for a fun ten and half years!


allie :^) said...

i think that's the longest post i've ever seen you write or dedicate to "someone." :)

buck was a sweetie, and i loved that you shared his story with us. :) its hard to lose a friend; human, canine or otherwise.

also love the updated kid pics on the side! ;)

Anonymous said...

Wonderful tribute to good 'ole Buck!

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