In a world where 3,000 people are dying a day from Covid it might seem strange to be so deeply impacted by the loss of a pet, but as many of you know pets can often have more impact on our day to day lives than most people. Yesterday the friends we are staying with lost Hobie, their dog of 14 years, and although he wasn’t my dog I find myself incredibly sad and missing him. Over the last six years of travel we have spent more time with Cori and Greg than anyone else, and for most of those years when we didn’t have a pet, Hobie filled some of that void in my life.
For anyone who ever met him he had a larger than life personality and definitely was the boss in the Cori, Greg, Hobie relationship. We affectionately called him “Thug Dog” because he ran the show like a gangster, and although there wasn’t a mean bone in his body he could let you know in no uncertain terms when he was displeased. When I talked to Greg yesterday he mentioned that Hobie was the reason Jack came to us and that is absolutely true. I wanted a dog just like Hobie, and although I knew that was unlikely I bought Jack (same breed and look) in the hopes he would have some of the same characteristics.
Watching Hobie take the young puppy under his wing was both fascinating and a little frightening. Jack is a pretty good puppy, but when he got around Hobie his ornery side would definitely come out. Hobie was amazingly tolerant of the new puppy antics and showed Jack some tricks of the trade like lifting his leg to pee, hiding toys, and reproachful looks when displeased. When Hobie got sick a couple of months ago, we were worried that Jack would make him feel worse, but as dogs often do he was solicitous of his friend and seemed to be looking out for him.
It’s easy with animals to see what you want to see, but all I know is the night Hobie died Jack woke me up at 4am and when I took him outside his behavior was very unusual. Believe what you want, but I think he knew something was wrong, and I know he is sad his buddy is gone. We are all sad, because the loss of a beloved pet can often be worse than a person. They provide unconditional love, are with you more hours than most people you know, and definitely provide something unique and special that nothing else can.
We loved you buddy, and we are grateful you were in our lives. Jack is a living legacy of the impact you had on us, and you will be missed.
Here are some of my favorite Hobie memories.
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