08 September 2017


by Andy Weddington
Friday, 08 September 2017

All dogs go to Heaven because, unlike people, dogs are naturally good and loyal and kind. Whippet Angel  

Smurf was her birth name.  

Still young and rescued, thirteen years ago, her parents (re)named her Darby.

Same for her of a different litter "brother," Jake, tagged with Colorado at birth.

My good fortune for the past 11 years has been to visit them semi-annually - before and after fly fishing trips. 

Always a hearty, hectic welcome - Darby and Jake so excited and happy to see family. 

Darby the spirited, electric one. 

Jake calm. And cool with an air of indifference. 

The pair inseparable. 

But came death to Darby last week. 

At home, with parents and Jake, and an understanding veterinarian, comforting her to the end, Darby journeyed to wherever it is good dogs go; Heaven according to Whippet Angel. 

Hurricanes and politics and such have been of little interest this week.

Darby and a family favorite photograph of her have preoccupied my thoughts and work. 

With fond and clear memories of her vibrant spirit, my studio time spent in attempt to translate that photograph and those memories into something alive.

Early this morning I sent my brother an image of the portrait of his girl.

"WOW! I'm speechless! ... Don't know how you improve, it's Darby!"

Yes it is. 

And I'm going to look at Darby for a while. Give her time amongst us its just due - she made my brother's family world a better place. Darby was kind and loyal. And good.  

What more can be expected of and gifted from a friend, dog or not?!

Eventually her portrait will hang on a wall - where it belongs; with family. And closer to her brother, Jake. 



Anonymous said...


We can hope...

Jijm Bathurst said...

Touching and no politics, I like that Andy. The loss of an animal, hard to get over. Lost two this year. Our 16 yr old Carly, a rescued one-eyed Golden Retriever, and our beloved male Siberian stud, Mr. Silver, who came to us from Czech Republic, only 5 1/2 (rare incurable disease). Why is it so hard to end the life of something that demands nothing but gives so much?

Tom H. said...

Andy, this hits home, big time. "Maggie" was our wonderful dog for nearly 14 years, and my solo companion for nearly five years while I was a geographical bachelor, working in Tallahassee. She was probably the only reason I maintained some semblance of sanity. Although it's been 3 year since we lost her, I'm not sure I'll ever fully recover from losing her. What a gift!

Anonymous said...

Andy, one of your best. That is a beautiful painting of Darby (I can see Darby's spirit) and a sweet tribute. I hope Jake's OK. Dogs grieve, too.

I sitll grieve over the loss of Omar (3 years ago on 9/6/14). I treasure the painting you did of me and Omar and I know how your brother feels about the loss and about the beautiful painting of Darby.

Dogs are better than people, way better imho. ~ Dottie Jean