The last couple of weeks have been a crazy whirlwind. Our beagle, who we adopted over 11 years ago, passed away this week at the age of 13. Up until a couple of weeks ago, he’d been healthy and energetic, but he developed kidney disease which progressed really rapidly and was starting to affect his overall well-being. By Thursday, we knew that it was time to let him go.
We don’t know much about Jasper’s first two years of life, other than he was found on the side of a road, starving. He ended up at a local shelter and was adopted, then returned back to the shelter, a couple of times. A family that we knew then adopted him and it wasn’t working out and so they were also considering returning him. I told them, “Don’t do that. I’ll take him home and see how he does with our other dog.” I brought him home, he got along great with our other dog, the girls named him Jasper, and he was with us ever since.
If you don’t know anything about beagles, let me educate you. They are stubborn. They can be difficult to train because they do what they want, when they want. They are escape artists. They have an amazing sense of smell, so once they catch a scent, they have no interest in anything else. Jasper escaped out of our fenced-in backyard countless times when we first adopted him. If he couldn’t get over, he’d dig his way out under. We often asked ourselves what the hell we’d gotten ourselves into during those early days.
But then it seemed that Jasper realized that he had a pretty good gig living with us, and he settled into our family’s daily routine. He wasn’t a cuddler, or a lap dog, but he did love a good belly rub. His favorite things to do were to sniff around the backyard, bark at the neighbors, take naps, and eat treats. His favorite people foods were tater tots and popcorn.
Although I sometimes affectionately called him an “asshole” because he could be so stubborn and didn’t listen most of the time, he really was a good boy and I miss him terribly. He always slept in a bed next to my side of the bed and waking up in the mornings not seeing him there is heartbreaking. I miss hearing him snore. I miss his beagle bark. I miss his grunts while he would sit next to me when I was eating, waiting to see if I’d give him a bite. I miss looking out the kitchen window out to the backyard and not seeing him walking around, his nose to the ground sniffing all of the smells.
Jasper’s last day was filled with love. Although he couldn’t eat at that point, and didn’t feel like leaving his bed, we brought the love to him. The girls came over to say goodbye, as well as our groomer, who is a wonderful woman who loves our dogs, and our neighbor came by as well. Although Jasper wasn’t feeling well, his eyes lit up with each visitor and I know he was loving the attention, love, and kisses.
I’m sad and I miss him so much, but I know that he had a good long life and that he was loved.
May your glass always be full,