Thursday, January 27, 2011

goodbye, Boudreaux dog

I have been avoiding this. I don't want to put this into words. It makes it more real.

Our Boudreaux dog was hit by a car on December 30th out at Nick's family farm in Tennessee. He was still alive when the DePalmas scooped him up and took him to the vet, but he didn't survive the ride over. He died peacefully in his NeNe's arms, wrapped in his favorite blankie. We built him a wooden casket and buried him on the DePalma's farm, his favorite place on earth. We sowed the freshly turned dirt with a thousand tears. Two days later, we returned to Boston with the heaviest of hearts, a family of four now a family of three.

We miss him every day. The hardest moment is sliding our keys in the lock. The deafening silence in place of a jingling collar.

Boozie's death only took a moment. What really matters is his life.

taken December 25 2010

Boudreaux Jenkins DePalma began his life with us on January 3 2009. Nick and I had been looking for a dog for ages with no luck. Boo was the first dog in the first cage at the Atlanta Humane Society, trembling uncontrollably with a cocked ear. We took him outside to get to know him and he ran in blinding circles, barely interacting with us. I was kind of skeptical but Nick just knew. This was our dog. He had been in the shelter before--brought in as a stray and adopted by a family the fall before. He had been returned on Christmas Eve. The family said he was too much of a handful. A handful he was. Barely an hour later, we were driving home with him.

Everyone thinks their dog is the best dog in the world. Ours actually was. He ran as fast as the wind, but he snuggled like a baby, limp as a ragdoll in your arms. He wanted to talk to us so much that he'd sing out in frustrated syllables, mimicking our conversations. He caught birds out of the air while leashed on a walk, not once, but twice. He was the king of the dog park, always setting in motion a massive all-dogs-included chase. Some of his toes were black, and the others were pink. He looked handsome in his red collar--always a red collar. He liked running, chasing squirrels, walkies, frisbees, potato chips, chewies, and most of all, his mom and dad.

When Julia was taking Goosey into the shop for an estimate after her run-in with a lawncare truck, she brought Boozie with her. The folks in the auto shop circled around Boozie, patting him and admiring his handsome face. One old man remarked Well, isn't he just better than a person? He was. Our baby. Our little mung bean.

Boudreaux leaves behind his devastated mother and father, his indifferent catbrother Moppy, both sets of adoring grandparents, and a loving extended family. Our little nephew Fuzzy in particular had a very special connection with our little black and white pup. Boozie also leaves his best friends Gilbert, Phineas, Felix, and Felix.

We miss you so much, little one. We can't believe you're gone.

Boudreaux Jenkins DePalma
Loving Pupdog
Born July 4 2007
Died January 30 2010
Forever Our Little One

Discussion Quesion:
Talk with me about all the pets you've loved and lost.


  1. Oh no :( I'm SO SORRY for your loss, I got tears in my eyes reading this. It sure sounds like you guys gave that cutie dog two wonderful years filled with love and hugs and happiness.

  2. Thanks Tanie :) I know you're a dog person you can understand how important he was to us.

  3. That is super sad. :( I never had a pet that was quite as close a companion as Boudreau, but I do remember some sad goodbyes to furry and scaly pals...

    Goldie- Goldfish, suicide.
    Turdie Burtie I, box turtle. Fell asleep, didn't wake up
    Turdie Burtie II, box turtle. Possible magic marker poisoning.
    Thumper- Albino white rabbit with pink eyes. Got "pink-eye".
    Fluffer- Brown and white rabbit with floppy ears. Went feral.
    Squeak- Friendly small rat. Old age?
    Nibbles- Friendly large rat. Got a tennis ball sized neck tumor - cancer? Euthanized by my dad.
    Smokeprint- Darling, part-balinese girl cat. Presumed predated by wild or feral canines in our rural WA State neighborhood.
    Beavis- Scratchy, striped boy cat. Presumed predated by wild or feral canines.
    Luke / Horatio- Charismatic white-tipped black male cat. Survived arm broken in car door, falls from second floor windowsill, bullying by possums and raccoons. Presumed predated by cougar.
    Slick- Water turtle, 1986 - ? Bequeathed to younger kid when I went to college. Possibly still alive.
    Spike- Iguana, 1993 - ? Bequeathed to kindergarten teacher when I went to college. Possibly still alive.
    Binky and Buster - Goldfish, untreated water poisoning. Resultant guilt and bad karma may have precipitated break-up of culpable adoptive fish parents.

  4. May they all rest.

    I was so traumatized by fish deaths growing up that I still dream of realizing I have an aquarium full of fish that I haven't cared for in ages. Some of the fish are still alive and it's all green and gross...ugh it gives me the creeps every time.

  5. I'm so sorry for your loss Katie. To rescue a dog is to save their life, yes, but until you've done it, you don't fully understand how much they save you in return. You and Nick gave this little ball of love the most wonderful 2 years he could've ever imagined. Don't ever forget that. Cherish the short time you had with him and I hope in time, when you think of him, your heart can be full and glad instead of aching as I'm sure it is now.

  6. Thank you so much, Erin. That's really sweet. :)

  7. Such a beautiful tribute to Boudreaux. I am bawling. It's so hard to say goodbye, especially when something so tragic and sudden happens. :(
    I'm so sorry again for your loss. He was a gorgeous dog. I still miss my Gypsy dog, my baby before I had a baby. She's been gone almost 2 years now and I still miss her so much. I've got my old rescue boy Harley still, who is 13 and pretty broken down and my new crazy rescue Lucy. Dogs leave such a mark on your heart. May the memories of Boudreaux give you comfort as time goes one. xxoo.

  8. Oh Katie Jane, you brave sweet soul. I have really been missing your internet presence, and I'm glad you were able to post this. I've said it before, but I still mean it- Boudreaux couldn't have possibly had a better home nor a more loving mom and dad than you and Nick. Growing up I had farm dogs, and farm dogs, well... sometimes they just don't come home at night and that's that. It's devastating, but it's part of life. It's so easy to blame someone or some circumstance, but eventually you just have to deal with your loss and grieve. I hope that you and Nick are recovering (do we ever recover?) as peacefully as possible knowing that your beloved dog knew no better home on this earth and that he got a better sendoff than most other dogs. Bless your sweet heart.

  9. What a wonderful tribute - I have tears rolling down my face... He was lucky to have such a great time with you.

  10. Melanie, thanks for commenting. I know you really struggled with losing Gypsy and I have thought of you many times in my grief. Sorry that I didn't reply to your comment earlier--it got lost in the shuffle. xoxo

  11. I teared up reading this. I'm very sorry for your loss. :( I have two much-loved cats and I just dread the day when my time with them is over.

  12. Thanks for reading, Brenda. Pets occupy a special place for people, huh? :)