Monday, February 15, 2010

Jack



Jack is gone. 

Last Friday he was operated on for what turned out to be a massive tumor, necessitating a three hour surgery.  He came home and seemed to be recovering. The next day he managed a few shaky steps outside, before returning to his bed.  He seemed comfortable, though still groggy, and we thought that all was well.  Later, unexpectedly, he had a seizure of some sort, perhaps a massive  stroke, from which he did not recover.

He was the most cheerful dog I've ever known and the only dog who made a habit of turning to thank you when you opened the door to let him in.  

Jack the Jester, we sometimes called him because he was foolish in ways that didn't seem right for a Border Collie.

  "What would the lads down at the pub say?" we would ask when he climbed in a lap for a quick snuggle.

Another member of Dog Club gone, alas! But oh, what fun they had!

And how much joy they have brought us, despite the inevitable goodbyes.

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37 comments:

Martin H. said...

Vicki

So sorry to about Jack's passing. It's always a terrific wrench, and really is like losing a member of the family isn't it?

When we lost our Springer/Collie cross, I was distraught in a way I couldn't have predicted.

Still, you have the happy memories and the joy he gave. Things that will live on.

Diana said...

I'm extremely sorry for your loss.

jennyfreckles said...

What a beautiful dog he was. Very sorry to hear of his passing. Love and loss are two sides of a coin, but the whole is something infinitely valuable.

Miss_Yves said...

I'm sorry for you.It's always painful to lose a pet , like a member of the family.

Pat in east TN said...

When a dog brings so much joy into your life it's really hard to loose them. Jack seemed special and you have many good memories to carry you through. Loosing multiple dogs makes it even harder too.

Nancy M. said...

Vicki, I'm so sorry to hear about Jack - I'm sure he's left you with some wonderful memories.

Hélène Flont said...

I am sincerely so sad for you Vicki. it's really a great sorrow to lose such a wonderful companion who play a so very important part in a life. Douces pensées pour vous. Helen

Anonymous said...

The pain of losing a canine family member is great, but so is the joy of your lives together. Thanks for sharing photos of Jack through the blog. There's no doubt he had a wonderful life with love from human, feline, and canine friends all 'round.

Lynne in GA

KarenB said...

I am so sorry. Sending a virtual hug.

Christie Russell said...

So, so sorry...he was beautiful and was lucky to have a wonderful family!

Vicki Lane said...

Many thanks to all of you. What Jenny Freckles said is so true 'Love and loss are two sides of a coin but the whole is something infinitely valuable.'

He brightened our lives for many years -- and the brightness remains.

Tammy said...

Hi Vicki,
I'm so very sorry to hear this. Jack sounds like he was a little soul that brightened your life. To lose two of your furry pack within a short time of each other, just makes the holes bigger. As with all your animals, I'm sure when he landed on your doorstep, his life was full and happy.
Again, so sorry for your loss.
Take care,
Tammy

NCmountainwoman said...

What a shame to lose such a good friend. I love your attitude...it definitely is worth it and you'll still have the memories of Jack and his antics.

Helen T in SC said...

I remember your blog post with a picture of Ali Ali and Jack battling for the attention of a visitor to your home. Jack won out and was literally cradling your friend's thigh in his paws in a comfortable hug. I'm so sorry for your loss of another beautiful pet.

Reader Wil said...

I am so sorry, Vicki! That's one thing why I don't want to have another pet. They all die after ten, twelve or maybe twenty years, but sooner or later we have to say good bye to them.In our garden there are four graves of our cats, all sweet and lovely companions.

Jon Lee said...

I'm so sorry about Jack.

willow said...

Vicki, I am so sorry to hear about your sweet Jack. My thoughts are with you and yours today.

What an adorable pic of the dog club!

DL said...

Oh no.... I am so sorry.

debra and the beagles

Star said...

Rest in peace Jack. Seems like he's had a very good life with you'all and you will miss him very much. I love your picture of them all together with the cat.
How many dogs have you now? Shall you replace Jack?
I know how sad you are. I've been there and I know how it feels. I send you comfort.
Blessings, Star

Quilter Bear said...

Vicki,I'm so sad to hear about Jack's passing. I know how difficult it is, from experience, to lose a good four-footed friend... especially when they are special as Jack. Big squishy hugs, and lots of thoughts...

I'm so sorry!

Susan M. Bell said...

Hearing things like this always makes me cry; you know how I am about pets. But, you have told me yourself about how we open up our hearts to them, knowing they will eventually leave us, and how much they give us for the time we have with them. I mourn your loss, and rejoice in the years of joy that he not only gave you, but that you gave him.

Rebel Fan said...

So sorry to read about you losing Jack. A house is not a home without a BC.

Vagabonde said...

I feel sad about your losing Jack – it makes a big hole in your life when pets depart. We do not have dogs because we don’t have a fence yard. One of my daughters when she was small had a dog and one day when we were ready to drive to a restaurant to celebrate her birthday the dog went running to the street and was ran over. We have cats. We love to travel but we do miss our pets while we are gone. A couple of our cats departed in the last few years but we remember them with joy and also for the joy they gave to our lives.

estaminet said...

Sending love and comforting thoughts to you and your whole family, two- and four-legged alike.

Vicki Lane said...

Many thanks for all the kind thoughts and words! I had forgotten about the picture from last February of Jack hugging my friend's leg -- thanks for the reminder, Helen! It was so like him!

In answer to Star's question, we have four dogs now. Molly, an aged (13?), deaf, arthritic Golden Retriever mix, inherited from a departed neighbor; Maggie, the red Mountain Cur (hound) who is, we think, about 12; William, the Chihuahua/Dachshund mix who may be 13 or 14; and Dan, another Border Collie who is 3 or 4. (So we're still good on the BC thing, Rebel Fan.) And, of course, there are the two cats. And Justin and Claui's two dogs, who are on our sofa at this moment.

We probably won't be looking to get another dog at this point. We only wound up with so many by a series of accidents. I think that, with vet costs getting higher all the time, four is plenty.

Thank you again for all the dear comments.

Victoria said...

Vicki, I'm so very sorry to hear about Jack. I hope your happy memories of Jack will ease this time of mourning for everyone in your family who loved him.

Sue P said...

Today, I asked my husband, after we read the news about Jack, if the pain we have endured when we lost the 4 dogs that we have had over the 40 years that we have been married was worth the time we had with them. He had to think a minute, because he is still grieving over our last Golden Retriever, Ceilidh, whose death absolutely broke his heart. But then he told me that those dogs made his life so much more whole than he had ever imagined, that he can just thank God that they were there and he is (FINALLY, THANK GOD!) ready to bring another one into our family.
Vicki, our hearts are heavy with grief for you, and so thankful that you realized what you had in Jack...and Bear...and all your four-legged babies.

Vicki Lane said...

Sue P -- I think the best cure for the loss of a beloved pet is another -- if Jack had been our only dog, I would be looking for -- not a replacement, because you can't replace someone you love, but for another dog to love. Fortunately, we still have four.

We've always had multiple dogs -- which means we've been through this quite a few times. (We've been married 46 years, during which time we've had some 21 dogs -- mostly strays or 'previously owned' -- and it's been worth the occasional aggravation and the eventual sorrow to have had the pleasure of their company.

amy said...

I found your blog via Magpie Tales and had to offer my condolences for the loss of your beloved Jack. May his memory bring warmth and inspiration to your heart.

My Carolina Kitchen said...

Vicki, I'm writing with tears in my eyes. I'm so sorry to hear about Jack. It is so bloody sad to say good-bye to old friends such as Jack. My only children were four-legged and I loved them so much and miss each and every one of them.

I'll be thinking about you.
Sam

Vicki Lane said...

Thank you, Amy and Sam.

The sad thing is to see Maggie looking for him -- he was her constant attendant -- the jester to her queen.

Tipper said...

I'm so sorry about Jack. I know he'll be sorely missed by you all.

tori said...

scrolling down from your Magpie entry and saw Jack. I am amazed how much he looks like the little guy we brought home in October. His name is Ace.
sorry for your loss. I can't imagine.
Lots of pics and stories of my border collie on my blog if you'd feel like stopping by....

Vicki Lane said...

Thank you Tipper and Tori!

What fun to be starting with a puppy, Tori! Border collies are so very trainable -- they adore having stuff to do!

Kathryn Stripling Byer said...

Vicki, your Jack reminds me so much of my Ace, and of course I've fallen in love with him and now can't stand the thought of losing him, as I will inevitable. Dogs just don't live long enough, my poet-friend Penelope Schott said a few years back after losing her beloved Sadie, a golden mix. Now she has Lily a "goldendoodle." Lord, what we can breed these days! Lily's a great dog, but I sort of like my "rescue dogs," each with his/her own unique DNA and personality. We have four, too. Lord Byron is becoming senile. Don't know how much longer we'll have him. That will be a hard, hard letting go.

Kathryn Stripling Byer said...

Sorry--inevitable should be inevitably, but I figure you knew that anyway. It's late and my eyes and fingers are not dependable.

Vicki Lane said...

Thanks, Kay -- I've always tried to live by something I heard a neighbor tell his grandson many years ago --'Never turn down a dog's friendship.'

In spite of those relatively short lives.