Sunday, September 17, 2006

A Tribute To a Big Gold Dog

Wallace had to say goodbye this morning to his best friend, Tres. You can see some sweet photos of this Big Gold Dog here.

The best friend a man has in the world may turn against him and become his enemy. His son or daughter that he has reared with loving care may prove ungrateful. Those who are nearest and dearest to us, those whom we trust with our happiness and our good name may become traitors to their faith.

The money that a man has he may lose. It flies away from him, perhaps, when he needs it most. A man's reputation may be sacrificed in the moment of ill-considered action. The people who are prone to fall on their knees to do us honor when success
is with us may be the first to throw the stone of malice when failure settles it's loud upon our heads. The one absolutely unselish friend that man can have in this selfish world, the one that never deserts him, the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous, is his dog. A man's dog stands by him in prosperity and poverty, in health and sickness. He will sleep on the cold ground, where the wintry winds blow and the snow drives fiercely, if only he may be near his master's side. He will kiss the hand that has no food to offer; he will lick the wounds and sores that come in encounter with the roughness of the world. He guards the sleep of his pauper master, as if he were a prince. When all other friends desert he remains. When the riches take wings and reputation falls to pieces, he is constant in his love as the sun in it's journey through the heavens.

If fortune drives the master forth an outcast in the world, friendless and homeless, the faithful dog asks no higher privilege than that he accompany him, to guard against danger, to fight against his enemies, and when the last scene of all comes, and death takes the master in it's embrace, and his body is laid away in the cold ground, no matter if all other friends pursue their way, there by the graveside will the noble dog be found, his head between his paws, his eyes sad, but open in alert watchfulness, faithful and true even in death.


-From a speech given by
Former Senator George Graham Vest
of Missouri. Delivered in 1870 when he
was acting as a lawyer in a suit against
a man who had killed the dog of his
client. -- He won the case.

7 comments:

Bill said...

Great requiem for the dog.

Pancho said...

Thanks to all who have stopped by and left notes. It was a poignant reminder to myself to tell everyone [human and animal] that you love them often. You may not get the chance again....

Karen said...

Lovely post, Liz. I is so hard to lose a beloved animal family member.

Jeff said...

Miss Pattie, I'm happy to find someone else who recalls Senator Vest's famed speech ... I was thinking of the very same thing when I first learned of Tres' passing ...

Gwynne said...

What a wonderful tribute, and I love that speech. Makes me want to hug my beloved dogs all the more.

Anonymous said...

This is about the best printed comfort I've seen for someone who's just lost his beloved golden boy. Thanks for sharing it with all of us: ml of full fath.

on-my-mind said...

We had a dog when I was a kid, and she was just like this! Great post. I like Bill's comment.