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1.17.2011

Remembering a Great Dog

Tricorns Bluestockings "Zoe"
Today we had to euthanize our 15 year old Australian Shepherd, Zoe. She was born in this house during an April blizzard in 1996 and was the last survivor of all her litter mates. Zoe was an exceptional dog right up to the very last day of her life.

Through the past twenty odd years we've had over 20 dogs living in our home. Of them only 2 were truly dominant dogs and of those only Zoe had a clear eye and calm control over our herd. True dominant means exerting order and keeping everyone in their place without fighting or chaos. Just by look and stance all the others knew she was in charge and stayed in their place. When she was a young acolyte she allowed Roxy, her predecessor, to grow old and lose power with dignity before she took over the role of dominant dog. It was an amazing thing to watch but that's how smart and caring she was. We called her Miss P. - "the perfect girl".

During her lifetime she became a role model in local schools and at the library as "the community dog". Tish took her into classrooms to teach dog bite safety, took her to nursing home to perform and share her good nature with the residents. She loved to play ball, smell the flowers and learn. Whenever Tish started to teach her a new trick or ability her eyes would light up and her focus was laser sharp.

Up until last night when a stroke robbed her of her ability to swallow, she could still run around the yard with the others and enjoy reasonable good health even though she was a very old girl. We raised both her parents and she is the end of her line. Without her watchful leadership it will be interesting to see which of the remaining three will try to fill her shoes. Alas none of them has even the slightest idea how.

Goodbye Zoe. You were and always will be a part of the heart of our home. Our lives won't be the same without you.