She was great! Beautiful. Lean. Strong. Affectionate when she wanted to be and, at times, slightly aloof. She was a great companion. She was a neighborhood legend. She lived a wonderful and interesting life. When she was old and in pain, she never complained. She was a very important and dear member of our family. Today is her birthday and she is somewhere on a twinkling star, looking down at us with love and watching over us. I’m saddened as I write this, but I remember the fond memories…and there were many. Here’s to you Miss Ruby! Our family dog–and it is just weird to call her a dog–because she was more than that. I referred to her as a girl. She was so regal–just like a princess and I remember the day we got her as though it were yesterday. My oldest son was a bit put off that we ended up with a Yellow Lab rather than a Golden. So on the way home, we placed her into his lap, and within 20 minutes, it was love. She was the perfect playmate for the kids—and she never became annoyed at any of their crazy antics!
While the kids were in school, Ruby, along with our adopted Basset Hound, Dorothy, would keep me company. Always underfoot just waiting for me hand out a reward of liverwurst or taking a ride for their vanilla ice cream cones at the Cream King in Pennington, NJ!
She once saved our neighbor’s child from being hit by a car. The child ran out into the street as a car was approaching. Ruby ran in between the child and the car. Luckily the car had strong brakes and all was well! She never roamed far from home, if the back gate was left opened, she would saunter to a neighbor’s yard to see if the kids were playing on the swings. She would take turns sleeping in the kids’ bedrooms, being fair and showing no favoritism. She loved everyone! Her idea of fun was traipsing around the house stuffing as many objects as she could into her mouth. I remember one time in particular, she had been outside and I heard her scratching on the door. When I opened it, I almost passed out. She looked so proud of herself while a bird was dangling out of her mouth. To this day I feel bad by the way I overreacted–yelling at her to “get that dirty thing away from me”!!!!!!! When she tore the ligaments in her hind leg, due to a game I played with her, the vet was irate with me—but Ruby just showered me with affection as I nursed her back to health!
After my husband and I divorced, she moved with him to Manhattan. I was unable to have her in my apartment–but she became quite the Chic City girl. As Ruby aged and was no longer able to handle the five-floor walk up to my ex-s apartment, she came back to live with me and my Frenchman and his Corgi. The two got along perfectly and her senior years were spent quietly. It’s so painful when you know, deep down in your gut that your beautiful creature’s time on this earth is limited. Selfishness sets in and you cannot say goodbye so you let her continue on. Ruby continued on despite being ill and fragile. The night before she left us, I found her in the living room, laying under the coffee table. I bent down to ask her how she was doing (Yes. We spoke to her as though she was human.) The look in her eyes seemed to be begging me to let her go. I will never forget that look. The next day, Bonaparte, my Frenchman, took her to the vet. I was at the office. When I came home, Bonaparte sat me down and explained that it would have been too much for me to have seen her in that much pain. Ruby left four years ago at the grand old age of 17! Today she would be 21! So with that, my dear Miss Ruby, Vincent and I will toast to your life and the happiness and joy you gave to all! We will raise our glasses to the brightest star in the evening sky and thank you for your love and affection! Here’s to a Grand Old Dame!