Thursday, April 21, 2016

Hunter was the Best Dog Ever

My dog Hunter, will be crossing the rainbow bridge this morning. I got Hunter in February of 2002, a mere month after our previous dog, Jordan, got hit by a car.  Hunter was about 6 months old when we got him and my kids were 5 & 3 at the time.  I received him from a shelter called "A New Leash on Life".  He was a rescue dog.  As a pup, he was found living in a gopher tortoise hole with a sibling.  He was rescued and adopted out to a young person for a few months.  He was returned back to the rescue group when his original parent couldn't have him in an apartment where they were living.  

When I got Hunter, his name was Eliot.  The kids and I picked out his new name and he took to it right away.  The rescue group and my veterinarian thought he was a sheltie mix and were surprised that he got as big as a border collie.  We never did find out his true linage, but suspect he was border collie/sheltie.  From the picture you could see that he had a ton of hair, but his bone structure was rather small.  At his highest weight, he was only 50 pounds.  

About a month after I got Hunter was when my ex-husband and I split up  Hunter was there for me and the kids through that whole ordeal.  When I started seeing someone new, John, he and Hunter became close.   If you have been following me, you know that I split with my ex-boyfriend, John, in August of 2014.  My ex had a nice house and I was moving to a cramped apartment, so I left my geriatric dog, Hunter, with John.  Since that time, I have visited Hunter as much as I can.  It broke my heart to leave him, but I made the sacrifice because staying with my ex was the best thing for Hunter. 

I received a text from John yesterday to inform me that he made the decision to put Hunter down today. It was long overdue.  Because I was visiting him, I could see the deterioration better than my ex who was seeing him every single day.  It was only now that Hunter cannot get up on his own or stand very well, that my ex came to the conclusion that it is time.  

My ex made an appointment to have it done this morning and is going with his ex-wife.  I really cannot believe that I cannot be with my dog in his final moments, so I said goodbye to him yesterday.  Just another reason to confirm why John is an "ex".  

Hunter really was the best dog ever.  He was loving. gentle, polite and well mannered.  I really should have had him be a therapy dog, but I never went through the classes.  It wasn't until he got old that he started not to listen as much and couldn't handle change.  

I remember when my daughter was young and she would put tutus and tiaras on Hunter.  He was so patient and sweet to her.  He always liked everybody and he got a lot of attention because of how beautiful he was. In the springtime, I would brush him and let his fur fly into the yard where the doves would collect it for their nests.  He loved the squirrels in John's back yard and would protect them from the local cats.  I guess because he was a herding breed, he adopted the squirrels as his charge and they would all come down out of the trees and feed when Hunter was in the yard because they knew they were safe.  

He did chase cats and larger animals like armadillos.  I remember once when wild peacocks came into our yard and that really freaked Hunter out.  He did chase them and I suspect that was because they are so big since he had never chased smaller birds.  After that I always tried to keep him in the house if the peacocks or wild turkeys were around.  

As Hunter crosses over the rainbow bridge this morning, I am sure he knows that he is loved.  He will get to meet my previous dog, Jordan, and someday I will see them again. 

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