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 In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013

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Mschwax
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PostSubject: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 3:30 am

A dog is man's best friend. But Tim was so much more than just a dog. Tim's mother was a husky/mal/samoyed mix. His father was a wolf. I am animatedly opposed to wolf dogs. They are a genetic crapshoot. But when my uncle was crippled in a motorcycle accident and could no longer care for Tim and his brother, I was persuaded to meet them. We had just lost our 10 yr old husky Tuff to cancer. We took our 3 year old daughter with us to meet the dogs. Lest at, Tim's brother, immediately pounced and jumped. We left his kennel quickly. Tim walked quietly to her side, sat down and leaned his head against her. All of my misgivings instantly disappeared- I knew this dog was someone special. Tim came home with us that day. He wasn't perfect, at first. We learned the hard way that he saw cats as appetizers when he slaughtered a litter of kittens in front of our eyes. My husband grabbed the kittens from him, shook them in his face and told him NO! Tim never harmed a cat again, and we would find them eating from his dish and curled up with him in his bed for years to come. Once we found ourselves caring for some orphaned ducks. When the female duck died, the male decided to adopt Tim. Every day, Tim and Ralph would walk side by side down the gravel road to the creek for a swim. An hour later, they would come back down the road, wet and happy, Tim always careful to keep pace with Ralph. At night, Ralph would bed down on Tim's back, safe in his shaggy coat. No predator was a threat to Ralph with his mighty friend beneath him. One day Tim came back from the creek alone. We can only assume that the now grown up Ralph had finally realized he was a duck, not a dog.

Years later we added a flock of chickens, and the experience was much like that of the cats. Unfortunately, it took the loss of several chickens before Tim got the message. Each time he would kill a chicken of a different color. Once he had killed a black chicken, a red chicken, a white chicken and a yellow chicken, he seemed to suddenly realize he wasn't t allowed to eat ANY of the chickens. It was disappointing for him. He would Lie on the porch and stare at them longingly, and it was with much resentment that he allowed them to eat from his dish. We also added ducks and geese, but he never gave a thought to harming them, perhaps they reminded him of his friend Ralph.

Tim was a lousy guard dog. While his impressive size and his growled "wwrrroooowwrrr" that meant hello first intimidated some, it took only a minute to realize every stranger was a friend Tim hadn't yet been introduced to. He would trot to the car in his younger days, and stare in the window saying hello. As he grew older, his trot turned first to a lumber and finally to a slow, painful hobble, but all who knew him waited patiently for him to get to them so they could give him the required head scratching. If they forgot, Tim would wait by the door, blocking it, reminding them of their duty. Satisfied, he would retreat to his sunbeam.

We never had to tie or fence Tim. This was his home, we were his pack, and he had no wish to leave. Every day when I pull into the drive, my eyes go to his spot, expecting to see him pulling himself to his feet. There are flowers there now, peaking from the snow far too early, a result of his body heat warming the soil all winter I imagine.

We brought Vixen home January 1st, in the hopes that Tim could teach the next generation all a dog could be. And he was trying. When Vixen would terrorize the cats, Tim would step between them, always silent. Sometimes Vixen got the message, sometimes he had to spell it out. When she would get adventuresome and head down the driveway, we would hear Tim barking, a rare occurrence. We would find him standing in front of her, blocking her path, and forcing her back towards home and safety. Vixen desperately wanted him to play and at 14, play was not high on his agenda. But he would make the sacrifice again and again. It would take supreme effort for him to Join her in a romp across the yard, his legs would shake and his breathing was hard, but he would pounce and roll for several minutes at a time, and when he was done in a few firm nips would call her off. She would sit straight by him while he lay there panting, puzzled by his laziness. Had he lived another year or two I know he would have taught Vixen all the things that we can not.

Tim got hot quickly, but he loved to come inside and snooze by the fireplace. In winter we would open all the windows and put our coats on so that we could enjoy snuggling in front of it with him.

When our little boy was born, he saw Tim's giant furry body as an ideal nap zone. He would crawl to him and plop down against him and fall asleep. Tim would lie motionless, even when he was too hot and panting, and would not move until Silas woke from his nap. When the toddler became too rough and would pull his hair, Tim would never snarl or snap, he would simply get up and walk away.

Tim could be trusted with food, always. When we fed him, he refused to eat until we told him. We didn't train him to do that, he just did. Sometimes we would be in a hurry and forget to tell him "Ok" and we would return later that day to see him staring at his still full dish. His one weakness was French fries. I could leave a steak unattended on the grill, but a bag of French fries buried in the garbage sent him into an uncontrolled frenzy. We would find him parked in the strewn garbage, a guilty look on his face and a soggy Mc Donald's bag between his paws.

Tim was our friend and family, but not just ours. When friends found out he was dying, they raced to say goodbye. We sat in a circle of ten people around Tim, all taking turns petting his giant shaggy head or holding one of his massive paws. Saying goodbye was the hardest thing I have ever done. Tim suffered a stroke, but did not go quickly as I had hoped. His last hours became painful ones, and he cried out, terrified because he was unable to lift his head or stand. It was an ice storm, and the vet couldn't come. I sat by his side through the night, comforting him as best as I could. In the morning, my children and I struggled to carry him in a makeshift sling to the car, and into the vets office. Taking his life, even when it was clear that it was the right choice, was excruciating. I held his head in my arms and his face next to mine and tried to tell him it was all going to be ok. Tim's last few minutes were regretfully conscious ones, and he looked at me with such trust that it was hard not to feel I was betraying him. There is no easy way to kill someone you love.

I know eventually, it won't hurt so much. Someday soon I won't open the door and think to call his name. I scrubbed his muddy footprints off the floor for the last time this week. In spring, I will paint the scratches he put in the door frame every time he felt it was raining 20 miles away. And in summer we will move away from here, leaving him buried in the flower garden alongside our pug Sophie and various farm cats, a turtle I hit on the road and several goldfish. the new owners will look at the many stones that mark their graves and know these are special, these were our friends.

All of them friends. But only one of them was the best.

Miss you forever big guy.






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Mschwax
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:48 am

The last picture is my favorite-he looks like he is laughing at us!
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Rocio_Caballero
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 7:02 am

I'm sorry for your loss. He was beautiful.
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Hayden_69
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 8:38 am

You told the story/life of Tim so beautifully. I find myself teary eyed and wish I would have known you're furry friend by the name of Tim. With Tim being Vixen's teacher, even for a short period of time, I'm sure he taught her a lot and will turn out to be a great dog, just like Tim.

He was such a beautiful dog with a heart of gold to match. I know he will be missed, but know he will always be with you, watching over you and the two of you will meet again at the golden gates. Tim is no longer in pain and has regained his youth and running through the golden fields and probably trotting with his pal Ralph.

For what it's worth, some of the stories you mentioned about Tim would make an excellent child's story book, especially the one with the duck. What a great way it would be to honor his memory and for the world the share a piece of Tim. Just my
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SaberK
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 9:00 am

What a beautiful story of Tim's life. He sounds like he was a special boy. I know how painful a decision like that is even when you know you're doing the right thing. Take comfort in knowing one day you will see him again.
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UndarthAngipoo
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 10:27 am

That was beautiful. You've immortalized Tim's life with the perfect mix of words, and, now, in each and every one of us that reads his story. I wish I could have met him - he seemed like a dog among dogs. Smile

RIP Tim, run free...
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Tika
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 10:37 am

Run Free Tim Sad

~Chris~

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darbear
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 11:00 am

I'm extremely sorry to hear of your loss of Tim. You wrote beautifully about him and your family's life together. It seems that he taught you guys plenty of life lessons as well as you teaching him life lessons. He'll always be there with you guys. RIP Tim.
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Dot
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 11:20 am

I'm sorry for your loss. I'm teary-eyed just from reading his story, thank you for sharing a little bit of him with all of us. May he rest in peace.
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MelissaI
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 11:28 am

Sad I'm so sorry for your loss. I too am teary eyed. He was a gorgeous boy!
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Mschwax
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 12:28 pm

Thank you all. It has been a tough week. We had been preparing for his death for the last few years, but he kept surprising us and holding on. He was a little arthritic, but other than that never had a sick day in his life. I think I had almost convinced myself he was immortal, and now, having him die in such an awful way, instead of going in his sleep by the fire like I had imagined, has made it even worse. My heart just feels broken and I find myself crying over himin the middle of the night. I have lost so many pets before, even other beloved dogs. But I don't remember it ever feeling quite this awful. I just want him back!
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Kodasmom
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 1:33 pm

Very sorry for you loss. Love the story you did right by him with it. I also found myself teary eyed at the end. Tears for you peace for Tim.
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SabakaMom
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 1:55 pm

Such a beautifully written tribute! So sorry for your loss...
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jalepeno
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 2:05 pm

I am sorry.
Tim sounds like a great dog.
We love them so intensely because their lives are so short compared to ours.
My girl Tasha has been gone for three years and I still miss her.
Here's a link to the Siberian Husky Memorial page:
http://www.sibernet.com/memorial/index.html
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 2:25 pm

I'm so sorry for your loss Michelle,
Run free Tim Sad
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 2:35 pm

What a lovely write up you did of Tim and his life, im sorry you had to make the call on his life but it was the right call, may his memories never leave you.
sorry for your loss.

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Mschwax
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 3:35 pm

Michael, Bodhi looks very much like Tim, makes me smile. Is he all husky or did he have some mal in him? Tim obviously favored the malamute side, even though he only had a tiny bit in him. I would love to get another one someday, when it wouldn't feel like a replacement.
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 3:38 pm

Lisa, Sabaka is gorgeous. I have never seen a coat pattern quite like that! I love seeing all the dogs on here, they are all so beautiful. If I had the time and money I could easily become a husky hoarder...
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jalepeno
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:37 pm

Michelle, Bodhi is all husky.

I know what you mean about not wanting another dog to feel like a replacement.
I waited almost a year before getting Bodhi after Tasha died.
There was a hole in my heart where Tasha was, and I didn't know if I wanted to fill it.
After awhile, the edges weren't so ripped.
I realized my heart could expand and I could love another dog without doing a disservice to the first one.
That's the reason I rehomed a dog who needed a forever home.
Bodhi is glad to have his own humans and we are glad he's part of our family.
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Mschwax
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:45 pm

We brought Zelda home last weekend as a playmate for Vixen. She was just a whiny mess without Tim, and Zelda needed someone to take care of heer. The girls are sweet and funny and make me laugh, but they are nothing like Tim. But that is ok. It wouldn't be fair to him if they were.
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Sheba&Kennedy
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:01 pm

That was so touching to read. He was obviously a very special furry family member and he will always live on in your heart. He was a very beautiful pup and I loved reading about his time with you. Someday the pain will go away, but until then just take it a day at a time. It's such a shame they don't live as long as we all would love them to. Sad
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eluke81
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Thu Mar 14, 2013 1:35 am

He was a big beautiful guy and I am so sorry for your loss:( And I had just asked about him too - not knowing anything about him, just seeing his picture in your posts - and so recently after your loss, sorry I had no idea............ his life story is a great one and so well written, I like the idea of a child's book!! and he was so funny about the chickens and their colors:) trying to be a good boy and do the right thing:) Im sure in your eyes he never did any wrong - I know my baby girl (RIP) never did . May your memories of him live forever in your heart and somehow ease your pain and dry your tears.
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Fri Mar 15, 2013 2:01 am

Liz, You are correct. Tim could do no wrong. Even when he killed the chickens, I couldn't blame him. After all, we eat them too! Smile

Your Christy was a beautiful girl as well, I am sure you miss her a lot.

Thank you to all of you for the many kind words. It has provided some comfort. Some days I think I am ok and all done crying, the next I find myself bawling like a baby. Today was one of the latter. I would give anything to have him pacing around the house like a caged lion at night again, even though it used to drive me nuts!
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Fri Mar 15, 2013 2:10 am

Michelle: Christy was my first dog so I am not sure how these things go - they say time heals all wounds, but its been more than a year - and its not much better........ I miss her every day - she was my heart - and I still cry here and there - but just try to remember the good days and the funny things that make me smile and laugh instead......... your Tim makes me smile too - he was such a cute boy!!! lets hope the time thing works for all who have lost their babies............. and yes how I miss hearing the pacing little footsteps or the shake of her collar and tags - Sad a friend bought me a windchime when Christy died - and when the wind blows its her a talking or singing to me -
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PostSubject: Re: In memory of Tim - 1998-March 4, 2013   Wed Mar 20, 2013 1:05 pm

I'm sorry for your loss. He was very stunning. It is clear he had an amazing home and loving family.
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