Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Sometimes It Sucks to be the Old Fart


I'm not feeling very humorous today, so I ask that you indulge me this moment.  You see, we had to say good-bye to our sweet Bonnie today.  The cutest little West Highland White Terrier you've ever seen.  

A little over 10 years ago, at the same time that our daughter was pregnant with our first grandchild, my wife and I thought we needed a puppy.  Don't ask me why we made that decision at that point in our times we thought we were crazy.  But, we have loved every moment that precious pup blessed our lives.

Bonnie was the smallest pup of the litter, but without a doubt she had the most personality.  I can still see her "mixing it up" with her brothers and sisters over a toy, and she won!  That's when my wife and I looked at each other and simultaneously said, "That's the one!"

Shortly after we got her home we took her to see Dr. Barry Brier (the best Vet anywhere) for her first check-up.  That's when Bonnie was diagnosed with a chronic kidney disease, and we were told that she probably wouldn't live more than half the average life span for a dog of her type.  But, because of Barry's early diagnosis and treatment plan, Bonnie beat the odds.  And, beat them by a bunch.

However, I don't want to talk about her disease.  I want to talk about the love and joy she brought to us, and everyone else she came in contact with.  So, my notes below may seem a little disjointed, and may not be very well written, but they are my memories of Bonnie Jo Lucky Love Puppy Princess Oler.  That's a big name for a little dog and there's a story behind each name, but I won't go into those.

Some of my favorite Bonnie stories:

  • When she was really small she would run around the house at about 90 MPH and then slide on her stomach across the floor and end up under a gray leather hassock and all you could see was her little black button nose.

  • When we were house breaking her, I hung a bell off the door knob of the back door.  The idea was that she would ring the bell when she needed to go "tee time."  It worked pretty well, but you needed to make sure you let her stay out long enough after she rang the bell.  There are some things that just can't be rushed and if you tried to rush her you might find a surprise in the house.

  • I'll never forget the time that she got through the fence in the back yard, walked along the edge of the retaining wall, until it was safe for her to jump, then she would take off across the golf course.  She lead me on more than one merry chase down the Oak Course of Walnut Creek and around our neighborhood.  And, she would only be caught when SHE was ready to be caught.

  • Whenever we had guests at our house, Bonnie was sure they came to visit her.  Being the great hostess that she was, she'd get her favorite toy and persistently ask each of them to play with her.  She would not be ignored.

  • When she wanted to take a nap, she would look for the softest place she could find on the sofa or one of the chairs.  The more pillows the better.  She looked just like the Princess and the Pea.

  • At night when I would go to bed, Bonnie would follow.  She would lay on the bed while I took my shower.  When I crawled into bed, she would jump up, run to the den, get her favorite toy, come back to bed and want to play.  It would only take about two or three throws and fetches of the toy before she would be ready to settle down and go to sleep.

Bonnie thought her mission in life was to protect her pack (the three of us) from squirrels and birds.  And she was always on the case.  But, her real mission was to bring immeasurable love and joy.  This she did, unconditionally.

Today, 4 June 2012, at 11:30AM, someone in heaven was in need of a little white puppy, and God picked our Bonnie.      

(Note from Jan:) Bonnie was a terrific little dog. We spent a lot of time with her, and she was precious. It was always so much fun to see how much joy she brought Pat and Jennifer. She will be missed.



  1. Thank you for sharing your Bonnie stories...I'm so sorry for your loss!

  2. I loved learning about your sweet companion. I'm sorry for your loss, too!

  3. What a sweet remembrance! I love that dog, and I never knew it, but I feel like I do now.