I was asked one time if I knew what unconditional love is. This girl I was talking to had a child, and she was talking about her. Almost unflatteringly to that little girl, I said yes because I have a dog.
No disrespect was meant to that little girl. Quite the opposite. Anyone who's put in the same category as Roxy should feel honoured. Cannonized, if you will. Additionally, I don't refer to many as a bitch, as that insulting term would also put that person in the same league as the Roxinator.
At six weeks old, tiny and dirty she was carried into our house under my brother's arm and it was the start of the furriest, softest, funnest years.
From that stumbly, little puppy that left hair all over the place, you grew into an icon in the neighbourhood, a dog that liked everyone there and protected them. For the next decade and a quarter, you made your mark everywhere, making people and rhodents know who's boss.
I'll remember the walks with me on my paper route, the tricks for food you'd do, the way you tried to open the door to get inside the house, your greetings every morning. Oh, who am I kidding? I'll remember everything. It was great. Absolutely great.
I know you also have some fond memories. The walks, the food, the food, the food, the run-arounds, the food, the brushes (well, maybe not those), the belly rubs, the wrestling, the playing in the snow. Everything, right? Right!
Ah, the life of a dog.
We'll always have the scratches on the door, when you wanted to be let inside the house. You wanted to be with us. You want to be with us. We want to be with you.
Now and forever.
Postscript: Tragedy struck in the early morning hours of 19 November, 2004, at 02:00 EST. Roxy passed away, from natural causes. It was quick and relatively painless.
It was expected. She was 12.5 years old, and slowed down a lot in the last few years. Old age had kicked in. She was still active, and loved to play, just not as much or for as long.
12.5 years. 12 great years.
But it wasn't your time yet, puppy. You were only 12.5! Brandy across the street's older. Her predecessor was 15. 12 is young. It wasn't your time yet. I told you to wait for me until I got back. I guess I should've been more forceful about that one, and commanded you to stay with us. At least you were around after the U.K. Invasion. It's a shame that you won't be there when I get back. You won't see Mack grow up. Worse still, she won't remember you. You won't get to meet the people to whom I told all sorts of fine things to about you. You won't get anymore belly scratches from me :(
All good things must come to an end, I s'pose. God called, and he's got a much better tasting cookie than you could get here. Plus, He'll scratch your belly forever and ever and His arm won't ever tire. And think of all the squirrels you'll be able to catch. You'll catch squirrels and birds and mice that you caught here! Keep on terrorizing them!
Roxy. Rox. The Roxinator. Roxysopolous. Furry-face. Buddy-bear. Loser. Ugly. Pal. Pyal. The big, swoft dwog. The Chyna to my Triple H. Krox. The original goofy puppy. Roxy.
Roxy. The greatest canine.
April 12, 1992 - November 19, 2004.
One of my final pix of Roxy and I, taken shortly after I returned from a weekend in Waterloo, after returning home from the United Kingdom.
The Undisputed Champion and the Intercontinental Champion.