29 May 2007

Sweet Gabriel

Long ago, when A and I were living in Greeley after recently moving back from NY, we were getting married in a few months, and my folks were getting ready to move in to their newly built home. They had Nimbus still, who was a super cute Norwegian Elkhound, but onery as could be and getting old. I knew my dad wanted a BIG dog for his new home. So, being young, anxious and a little dumb I thought I would go out and get him one for X-mas. I knew my Mom would not be so happy, but she would learn to love the little pup. So off I went to the animal shelter. I found a cute little Rottweiller. We brought him home with us a few days before the holiday. The dog was cute allright, but he did not seem to notice the humans in the room. Very aloof. He kind of creeped me out. So, back to the shelter we went. They had a new addition. Described as a "Husky Sheperd" mix. He had an adorable little face, with droopy ears, and the cutest little paws. I picked him up and he just licked and licked and licked me. I knew he was the one. A always thought the perfect dog would be a Husky sheperd, or Malamute Sheperd mix, and Dad wanted a big dog. We presented him to my dad who thought he was pretty cute, and mom grumbled but she was patting him quickly enough. They christened him Gabriel. Over the next few months Gabriel adapted to life in my folks home, but he didn't seem to grow much. By summer he had put on a few pounds, but it was pretty clear that this was not quite the BIG husky sheperd we had all expected. His body seemed to stretch out a bit and he had a nice big tail, but his little legs never grew more than four inches tall! Our husky sheperd, had turned into a Corgi mix just like that. He still had an adorable puppy face, but the tail grew more and more out of line. Then one day something happened. Gabe used to go out in the field to chase bunnies, and generally tear around. One day he came back without his big tail! It had "shrunk" to a size fitting his little body. The little dog was pretty content, even if he had picked up a few grumpy behaviors from his big dog brother. When my folks started traveling after retirement Gabe was always ready with his bags packed. He was a great car traveler. He always seemed to have a good time at my house playing with Po. He even went to Mexico with them the past couple years. Although for some reason he did not like the grass down there. Too pointy or something?? In the last couple of years he had problems with his paws, and he was on special food for an out of whack thyroid that made him resemble an overstuffed sausage. Last week, just a few weeks after returning home to CO from Mexico he passed away. I don't think he was what anyone ordered as far as size and shape, but he managed to steal our hearts and fill our lives with love. 1995-2007

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