« It's Always Something | Main | The Tennis GOAT (OT) »

Friday, 27 August 2021


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Mutts are the best dogs. I'm sorry for your loss.

It seems like many of the breeds that people train as fighting dogs (a practice I can't really say enough against; it disgusts me at a really deep level) are, if not so trained, or even sometimes if given a good opportunity to recover from such training, among the best people-oriented dogs. From what I've read, the trainers essentially exploit their deep need for human approval to turn them into killing machines (which is why it disgusts me so deeply).

And then this becomes part of the reputation of the breed, and causes them trouble going into the future, and makes it hard for people to have some of the finest dogs.

Thanks for sharing that Mike. I enjoyed reading it and hopefully you benefited from writing it. And sorry for your loss. It seems clear that you and Lulu were both lucky to have each other.

That's a lovely reminiscence for Lulu. I'm sorry she's gone. It sounds like she was about the same age as my last dog when she passed away. That was almost eight years ago. After several years of "not getting another dog", I'm now a year or so into the "going to get another dog one of these days" phase. Some dogs are just hard to "replace" and so it takes a while to get over them, I guess.

Oh, and, those are excellent photos of her (and Xander). I can see why you like them so much.

I lost my German Shepherd two years ago to cancer. When we got him, his ears were completely shredded, and the shelter people thought he might have been used as a fight training dog. He either ran away or was thrown away; he was a large dog, but completely emaciated -- he weighed 30-some pounds at that point. When he died, he weighed 70. We've had a Belgian Malinois for four years, so they overlapped; but, things weren't right without Scout. A friend at an animal shelter (we only take rescues) called us two days ago to say they had a young male German Shepherd come in; it was being neutered that morning. We picked him up the next day, and today is the second day we've had him. Huck -- Huckleberry -- is home in a cone, and things are looking good with Willa, the Malinois. They are of a size (large) and share a ball fetish. Huck & Willa. Any day you get a new dog is a good day.

Mike, I'm so sorry for Lulu's passing. Can't imagine how it feels to you. This post brought a lot of emotion with it, though. Thanks for sharing all those details and moments...

The second photo immediately reminded me of the episode of The Simpsons called Bart's Dog Gets An "F". This might not mean anything to you if you didn't watch, but it might to Xander.

(It's a good thing, I promise)


It is a true blessing that you and Lulu found each other.

Mutts are dogs too and all dogs are man's best friends. Seems a dog will love you and wag its tails till it dies of starvation even if you did not feed it. Or is that just legend?

Thanks again for that discourse and it is certainly a worthwhile digression from cameras and lenses (and quartz watches).

Sorry for your loss Mike. You gave her a great life, she loved you deeply.

Thanks for this post. I’ve never been a dog person, preferring cats. But the love this article conveys is heartwarming and reveals much about the person writing it. In retirement and over 70 both my wife and I agreed, no more pets. To care for them properly requires considerable funds and more importantly our hearts become so wrapped up with them. However life happens as they say and when an elderly friend passed we inherited her pooch. And, as I both hoped and feared at the same time this sweet little creature has me completely besotted. In years past I had wondered about big old guys walking little dogs, now I’m that guy. We have now taken in another rescue dog, a very nervous little terrier who promptly bit me three days after we took her home. (Not her fault, just panicked when I tried to lift her.)
Now the first rescue has already trained the newest arrival on how to stare reproachfully at the big dumb human to get whatever you want.

Hello Mike:

I very sorry for your loss. I've been following your posts about Lulu with great interest and I'm sad that she is gone. Thank you for sharing her life with me. It means a lot to me. I'll be thinking of you.

I saddened to read she’s passed, but glad she had a happy life with you after such a grim start.

My old guy Bosco made it to the age of 16 as well. After his loss, we couldn’t fathom “replacing him” - so we had a period of nearly 2 years without a furry friend to love on. Then, we finally decided we were ready to start looking. That first day we went to the animal rescue, we saw a sleeping puppy and somehow knew immediately that he was meant to come home with us. 2 years later, Koji has made our lives so much better and I can’t imagine the past couple of years without him. The time with them never seems long enough and I totally understand the hesitancy to go through the pain of loss again, but there’s lots of great dogs out there looking for a good home and a loving companion - and the value they bring to our lives is immeasurable. So maybe try not to be too firm about “never again”. Maybe it’s better to say “not right now”. Or, maybe just take a look at what’s out there - a trip to the animal rescue never hurt anyone. ;)

Mike, sorry to hear about Lulu, do I understand that you have no dogs in your home presently? If yes then I think you will miss the wagging tail when you either walk in the front door or get the lease for a walk, or just have a conversation with her/him. Saving a mixed breed dog from a local shelter is one of many things we humans can do for animals that we share planet earth with. I think you may be getting a dog sooner than you think, all the best to you. No matter what the topic is or what emotional experience you write about it is all just superb reading.

Lovely pictures of a lovely dog. And lovely writing.

Mike, I'm sorry you lost a friend.

Wow, what a frightening story of Lulu's original home. It's horrifying that there are such disgusting vile humanoids in our society who will raise and abuse dogs for fighting for the only purpose of gambling by similar vile humanoids. A pox on that mindset and that class in our society.

I love that picture of your son and Lulu.

Thanks for sharing that beautiful story, Mike. You did good by her and I agree with Peter: you were both lucky to have found each other. My condolences.

Your description of a puppy not appreciated by three elderly cats made me smile, but I guess you rescued her from this cramped fate.

And my copy of Bystander II just arrived. (Bystander I is on another continent, so why not?) My first impression is that it is indeed a total redesign (with flashy design bits that you may not care for), with lots of new pictures since 1994, and a thoughtful discussion of how the major figures of the first edition have evolved, and of the changing objectives and new faces of the last 25 years. So it's worth going for the second copy.

If you haven’t already read Eugene O’Neill’s “Last will and testament of an extremely distinguished dog”, you should. And then come back and tell us again that you won’t get another dog. 😉


I am indeed sorry for your loss, our dogs have a way of burrowing deeply into our hearts.


Never apologize for sharing pictures that you love, or of those you love. Thank you for sharing her with us, and so sorry for your loss, and her passing.

The comments to this entry are closed.



Blog powered by Typepad
Member since 06/2007