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A Toast To Tobias

Tobias left us quietly this morning just before 10 a.m.  There was no struggle and no ugliness about it.  It truly was serene.  Last night as we prepared for the reality of today, Chrissie mentioned it felt strange to say we were "putting him down when we were really lifting him up".  In spite of some really interesting behaviors throughout his 16+ years with us, Tobias had been a blessing.  We finally surrendered back to God that which He had given us, and we are thankful.  After the vet visit, and my time in spiritual direction, I went out to raise a few ice cold beers in Tobias' memory and honor. 


When we found him at the shelter, his name was "Fry".  An odd name at best.  We didn't quite get it or comprehend why that was his name.  But he chose us, and we wanted him.  When he came home to begin a new life with us, we gave him a new name.  Tobias.  Not Toby.  No, no, not Toby.  Tobias.  His name came from The Book of Tobit in The Apocryphal/ Deuterocanonical Books of the Old Testament.  As Tobit's son Tobias leaves his father to go claim his inheritance, he goes with the angel Raphael, and they were accompanied by a dog.  There are few references in the Bible of a dog as a companion.  It seemed a good fit.  Sometimes we called him "Bi-bi".

Tobias was a sweet tempered dog, very gentle but strong, a good party dog who was always comfortable with people (especially for Redskins games), and he loved to run, romp and play.  He did not, however, like closed-in spaces.  Over time, he left his mark in many different places around the house: marred door knobs, some damaged doors, in fact, a pair of louvered doors nearly torn completely off their hinges (we considered renaming him "Houdini"), some broken handles on the sliding glass doors (resulting in some broken canine teeth), and severely bent AC vents.  Apparently, not long after we would leave, Tobias would visit the various trashcans around the house to redecorate by strewing their contents all around the place.  It was his way of settling down into being alone once we had gone.  He was eventually diagnosed as suffering from separation anxiety, for which he was prescribed medication - his own form of "doggie downers".  I loved to scoop him up in my arms, flip him over and cradle him like a baby to kiss him on the nose.  When he was younger and far more flexible, he would lie in my arms for hours.  When we took him on morning walks, he almost pranced like an expensive show horse.  Later in life, he resorted to wandering about the house at all hours of the day and night.       


Well that's 'nuff said.  Tobias was a special companion.  Now he's in heaven.  We loved him, and we will miss him.


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
May. 17th, 2007 01:26 am (UTC)
Unlike Mulligan (ahem) - Tobias was an excellent judge of character! Suzy said Cooper was incredibly restless last night - now I know why. Cheers Tobias. -jm
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )