Friday, February 14, 2020

Just a Dog: A Tribute to Chloe the Poodle

Last week we had to say goodbye to our miniature poodle, Chloe, who was part of our family for 16 years. Her health had been declining steadily for the past several months. Then, last Wednesday, she had what we believe to have been a stroke. And last Friday, we made the decision to have her put down. It was a hard decision, and a lot of tears were shed because of it.

And yet, Chloe was just a dog.

Just a dog who greeted everyone with enthusiasm. If you came to our house, you were instantly her new best friend. From her perspective, everyone who came by was there to see her.

Just a dog who had discriminating taste in toys, but not in food.

Just a dog who would trot along beside you when on a walk, until you came to a manhole cover, at which point she would leap as if to avoid a pit of certain doom.

Just a dog who would politely ask for permission before jumping onto the couch, then lie down beside you with her back against your thigh.

Just a dog who would patiently wait to snatch that piece of chicken liver off the kitchen floor until you said, "Okay!"

Just a dog who trained the new puppy we got several years ago better than we did.

Just a dog who would walk up to you when you were busy and lean against your leg as if to remind you that she was there.

Just a dog who would bark protectively whenever Dad roughhoused with the kids.

Just a dog who loved running through an open field, splashing through a stream, and treated every walk like the adventure of a lifetime, even when she was too old to make it more than one block.

Just a dog who curled up on the carpet in the middle of my office whenever I was working just so she could be near me.

Just a dog who, in recent weeks, would wait calmly near the stairs for me to carry her up or down.

Just a dog who merely tolerated being picked up for most of her life, but whose only peaceful moments at the end seemed to be when she was in my arms.

Just a dog who won everyone's hearts.

She will be missed.

Chloe (left) with our other poodle, Gimli.