Thursday, March 23, 2006

Mazel Tov Zachary GPS June 10, 1992 – March 21, 2006 I had to put a good friend down last night. Few of you know him, he never won anything, never did anything special for the breed, and the only mark he made was in my heart. Zac was four months old when I got him. I was supposed to get a chessie pup from a big-shot local breeder who called me a few hours before I was to leave to get the pup to tell me that it was not available to me. That was going to be my first “well-bred” chessie, a big move up for me. My friend aimed me to an ad in the local paper and we went and found Zac. He did not like his first car ride with us, actually, he never did like car rides and I bought a 4x4 pickup truck with a cab on the back so he could pace back there. Since he still muttered and screamed through every trip, I finally got a van and stuffed him in a crate. He loved being places, just did not enjoy the trip. Zac was raised with my friend’s show standard white poodle Winston. They made quite an odd picture running the fields together, Zac looking intense, Winston looking rather silly in his do-dads and bounding along. Zac always liked standard poodles. Winston has been gone for many years but I bet they are together now. Zac was going to be my obedience dog. He hated obedience. He would never sit straight and he never wanted to heel. The collars got harsher and harsher and he got worst and worst (even with food in front of him). One day, the instructor had me take the collar off and he heeled perfectly. After that, he always heeled perfectly without a collar but fought any leash. I was protected by Zac. Once when someone came to the door and tried to get in – I would not have wanted to confront the Zac that appeared then. The second time, at the park, when a crazy bike person ran over another of my chessies and then came screaming at me. Zac stood between us and his response escalated perfectly as the man tried to kick at him and kept yelling. I always called Zac my “40-watt” dog because he always seemed a bit dim. Dim? Last night after he was gone I realized how well he had trained me. I keep listening for the blinds to rattle so I would know he needs to go out; I threw biscuits out for the other dogs as soon as the meal is over because Zac demanded them for dessert. I got up every few hours last night to check on him, even though he was not there. And, I kept hearing him last night. So did my three other chessies who are a bit confused that their leader is gone (even with problems walking, he stayed the leader. Zac was full of life and full of heart. Zac was my chessie. I miss him.

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