A Tribute to Heidi

My husband’s best friend of 14 years passed on September 5, 2008. He tells me that it happened just as he wanted. She fell asleep and was laid to rest on the farm where Darren worked with his uncle. Darren and his dog spent many happy days there.

He tells stories of how she used to “show the cows who was boss” by rounding them up to go into the barn. She would nip at the heels of the stragglers, making them join the group.
Darren was continually amazed by his dog’s speed, and the gusto she had for everything they did together. He says, “She trusted me and just had to be with me no matter what.”

It was these memories of a faithful and loving friend and companion that made the inconvenience of incontinence and other signs of old age in his dog so tolerable. He still saw only a young and energetic puppy, where the rest of us saw a thin and arthritic dog who could no longer hear.
Darren’s life was saved by this once young dog. This was the moment that brought them closer than anything ever had. It was then that Darren knew how much his dog loved him. The house was on fire, but the master of the house was oblivious to this, being fast asleep. It was the dog that sensed danger, and woke my husband just in time to spare him from being overcome in flames.

Heidi was with Darren through the purchase, toil and sad loss of a farmstead when the cattle market fell through. It had been Darren’s dream for many years to own his own lot of cattle rather than exclusively work as a farm hand. He says that he grew closer to God in this sad loss and was comforted by Heidi and her dear undying friendship.

He wanted a tribute written to her, and published on my blog, but couldn’t do it himself. The best I can do is try to piece together the stories that I’ve heard – try to capture the emotion and pen it out.

I don’t believe dogs have souls, and really can’t fully understand this deep caring for a pet. However, I did cry when he cried, holding me close after returning from doing what he’d hoped never to have to do. I love Darren and am thankful that God gave him such a friend in a time when he felt alone.

Darren wants me to be sure to write that he can’t even express the deep thankfulness he has in his heart for the kids and myself here and now.

Goodbye, Heidi dog. You were lucky to have such a kind master in your life.

Darren spent all of his childhood years dreaming of the dog he might have one day. That dog was Heidi, his one and only.

It’s been a week, and Deeder is still looking for the ole’ doggie, calling for her, and patting his leg the way we do to get her to come.

5 Responses to “A Tribute to Heidi”

  1. Jennifer says:

    Very nice. It did Heidi justice!

    Jennifer’s last blog post..It Doesn’t Get Much Cuter

  2. Marylin says:

    What a beautiful dog she was! I bet Darren’s thankful that Deeder got to meet her. :)
    Losing such a long-time friend is hard, doesn’t matter whether that friend is human or animal, and it sounds like they’ve been through a lot together. ((hugs)) to Darren. xx

    Marylin’s last blog post..Hai, I have good news!

  3. Tater's Mom says:

    So sorry to hear about Heidi. Losing a pet is a devastating time. I don’t know if you have heard of The Rainbow Bridge Poem but if not, you should read it and share it with Darren as it is beautiful and very comforting.

    http://rainbowsbridge.com/Poem.htm

    Safe travels on the rest of your trip.

    Tater’s Mom’s last blog post..Aye, aye captain

  4. Kathie says:

    Our prayers are with Darren. May Heidi forever be romping through the fields of North Dakota in his heart.

  5. Lauren says:

    gosh Laura, that was sweet. Im sure Darren agrees with that, too! Couldn’t have been written better.
    Heidi was indeed lucky to have him as an owner…she can now run free forever.

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