Wednesday, June 27, 2007


February, 1967

It was the Saturday before my eighth birthday and, as usual, I was watching cartoons and eating cereal from those little boxes of variety packs. Sugar Pops, Alpha Bits, Cocoa Puffs. Mom and Dad appeared at the door and Dad had something behind his back. . .

. . . it was a seven-week old Beagle puppy! Dad sat it down and it ambled over toward me.

I was stunned! I was overwhelmed and I started crying which surprised me. Up until that time, I had only shed tears when I got hurt or was upset. I didn't know one could cry due to sheer happiness.

I hadn't even asked for a puppy, but there it was. A Beagle; just about the puppiest puppy one could ever want.

Having been a big fan of Charlie Brown, of course I named it Snoopy.

Snoopy and I became best buds. I loved that dog with all my heart.

Soon after that, Mom and Dad went through a separation and my brother and I were sent to live with my paternal grandmother for about eight months. Feelings of abandonment, home-sickness and loneliness were all comforted by the constant and happy presence of dear Snoops.

Things settled down and we grew up, my brother and I, into our teenage years. Snoopy was always there to meet me when I got home from school with lots of happy wiggles and yelping. No matter what, Snoopy would hardly be able to contain herself over the simple fact that I had returned home.

Our next-door neighbor, Mrs. Bruchmiller, was not particularly fond of Snoopy because, like all Beagles, Snoopy bayed quite a bit at night. Such a good watchdog, but not conducive to friendly neighbor relations.

Every morning, Snoopy would dash out the back door, down the alley and chase the milkman's truck. Snoopy probably thought she was being a good watchdog. We bought our milk at the store and as far as she was concerned, she was just being successful at making the milk truck go away.

One morning, she apparently didn't get out of the way in time and I was awakened by my mom with the devastating news.

I was sixteen, and was surprised to learn, once again, how intensely one could cry.



At 3:41 PM , Blogger Red7Eric said...

Fur does not mean you're not a part of the family. The best dog I'll ever have was named Maude. She came into my life at a time when a boy really needed a dog, and I miss her still (almost six years later).

At 12:14 AM , Blogger Lorraine said...

I'm gonna cry now.

At 9:21 AM , Blogger Kyle said...


At 7:11 PM , Anonymous MHP :) said...

Dooder, I missed reading this blog before...and now I'm going to cry, too!! This is sad and beautiful.

Have you ever seen the movie "My Dog Skip"? It'll make you cry, but it's soooo good!!


Poodle :)

At 2:33 AM , Blogger more cowbell said...

Oh ... I wasn't expecting that at the end. I had steeled myself for an old-age death ending.

At 12:32 PM , Anonymous the neighbor said...

Well written Buck, and tender.

Having just lost my beloved Bugsy, those feelings are still fresh.

xo nayb


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