For the DP dog lovers...Submitted by Jefferson2 on Thu, 08/12/2010 - 11:08
I know this is off topic, but the DP is a place where I can occasionally find some peace in releasing my thoughts.
It is with heavy heart that I write to you tonight. I just found out one of my best friends' dog has cancer, and must be put down tomorrow. He is spending the his last moments with her, and is a wreck. This all came as a surprise to him, and I'm sure he is regretting not spending more time with his most loyal companion.
There is no more loving and faithful creature than a dog, in my opinion. They are protectors, companions, coworkers, and family members. Never judgmental. Always forgiving. Always wanting to please.
I cannot even bear the thought of the day I lose my two wonderful Labrador Retrievers. They have enriched my life so much, and I see them getting older, and know the day will come sooner than later. We have had a lot of fun together, but work and life, has kept me from hanging with them as much.
If you feel the same way I do about your dogs, be sure to spend as much time as you can, and enjoy their unconditional love. For that matter, spend time with all of your loved ones, because we never know what tomorrow brings. Enjoy the small moments in life, because it can take some nasty turns when you least expect it.
I wanted to share some stories about a dogs loyalty, with hopes that we all can learn something from it, and see how enriched our lives are in some way.
Hachiko: A Dog's Loyalty Knows No Boundaries
A Friend Waits
(This was made into a movie recently)
Professor Hidesaburō Ueno lived in Tokyo with his beloved Akita named Hachiko. Everyday Hachiko would see Ueno off to work from his home and then, at the end of the day, greet him at the nearby Shibuya Train Station.
One day in May 1925 would be the end of their daily routine together, for Ueno suffered a fatal stroke during his day at work. He never returned to his faithful friend that day nor any day thereafter.
Hachiko was given away to new owners but the loyal dog always ran off in search of his true master. After returning to Ueno's former home several times, Hachiko realized that he did not live there anymore. Hachiko then searched for his friend at the train station. There he perpetually returned everyday henceforth, always at the end of the day and at the precise time of Ueno's scheduled arrival. Hachiko waited there in vain every day for 11 years.
The Story Spreads
Some of the people at the train station recognized Hachiko from his prior rendezvous with Ueno. Knowing about Ueno's death, they were deeply touched by this act of loyalty and brought him food. Eventually the story spread about Hachiko.
A former student of Professor Ueno's heard of Hachiko's vigil and went to the station to see the loyal Akita. Fascinated by Hachiko, the former student wrote several papers on him. In 1932, one of these papers was published in Tokyo's largest newspaper. This article threw Hachiko into Japan's national spotlight.
Hachiko became the personification of loyalty. School teachers and parents would use him as a teaching model for dedication and loyalty. In 1934, a well-known Japanese artist sculpted a likeness of Hachiko to be placed at the entrance of Shibuya Station; in the same area he waited for his long-deceased master. Hachiko himself was there for the statue's dedication.
Bobbie, the Wonder Dog
A Scottish Collie and English Shepherd Mix
- Bobbie was a Scotch collie and English shepherd mix that managed to find his way home after getting lost on a family trip. Bobbie traveled at least 2,800 miles from Indiana to Oregon in just six months in 1923. The Braziers identified the dog upon his return by three unique scars that he obtained before he was lost. His monumental feat of faithfulness did not go unnoticed. He was featured around the world in a series of newspaper articles and in Ripley's Believe it or Not. Having won the heart of a number of people, Bobbie received hundreds of letters, ribbons, collars, and even keys to various cities. He was also given a silver medal, engraved with the record of his long-distance journey by the Oregon Humane Society.after accidental abandonment on a cross country trip, Bobbie made his way back over 2800 miles to his family's home.
A Border Collie from the United States
- Shep was a border collie who followed his beloved master everywhere. When the man died in 1936, Shep followed the man's coffin to the train station in Fort Benton, Montana. When they refused to allow him on the train, Shep hung around the station yard and waited for his master to return. For the next six years, Shep checked every train that arrived at the station for his master. Tragically, Shep was killed by a passing train in 1942. His story was memorialized in a book titled Forever Faithful-the Story of Shep. He even has his own memorial with a large bronze sculpture of himself in a little park over looking the river.
A Jack Russell Terrier from Scotland
- In 2001, a Jack Russell terrier named Heidi scrambled down a 500-foot drop to get to her owner, Graham Snell. Snell had fallen off the cliff while hiking and died instantly. Heidi stayed by her master's side for two days until rescue teams finally found them.
A Skye Terrier in Edinburgh, Scotland
- John Gray died on February 8, 1858 in Edinburgh, Scotland, leaving very little behind except for a little Skye terrier named Bobby. The day after the burial, the curator noticed Bobby lying on the fresh mound of dirt. He immediately chased the little dog away, but the next day he was back. Again, the curator chased him day, but on the third day-despite the cold and the rain-Bobby was back. Finally, the curator took pity on the poor dog and allowed him to stay.
For the next fourteen years, Bobby kept constant watch over his owner's grave, rarely leaving except to take his noontime meal at exactly one o'clock. After a while, he came to be known as Greyfriars Bobby, after the cemetery in which his master was buried.
Bobby outlasted his master by fourteen years. When he died, he was buried just inside the gate at Greyfriars Kirkyard. He could not be buried with his master because it was consecrated ground. His headstone reads, "Greyfriars Bobby - died 14th January 1872 - aged 16 years - Let his loyalty and devotion be a lesson to us all."
Greyfriars Bobby may be gone, but he has not been forgotten. Shortly after his passing, a statue was resurrected in his honor. His story was also passed down and eventually a fictional version of the tale was published in a book titled Greyfriars Bobby by Eleanor Atkinson. In 1961, the book was made into a movie titled Greyfriars Bobby: The True Story of a Dog. Another movie was released in 2006 titled The Adventures of Greyfriars Bobby and starred Oliver Golding and Christopher Lee.
If you have stories to share, then I'd love to read them.