Kendal Hemphills Commentary column in the January issue was truly touching! My wife and I just lost a beautiful German shepherd named Mia to a disease called spinal myelopathy. She was only eight when the debilitating effects forced us to put her down. It was the hardest thing my wife and I have ever had to do.
To her last day, her heart was 100 percent ready to go even though her body failed her. She went through obedience training and trials and was always at the top. She was great with people and small children but she defended my wife on more than one occasion while I was off on hunting trips and kept strange people out of our yard.
I know some people say, "Oh, its just a dog," but to us it was a family member we still miss to this day. Our plan is to acquire another shepherd this spring and be the best mom and dad a puppy ever had.
Juan and Erin Cuellar
Port Arthur, TX
We put our beloved chocolate lab (female) "Camper" down on December 28.
We cried 10 pounds of tears. Our friends were jealous of our two gals for the beautiful life they had. Summer in Colorado and our mountain cabin in Ruidoso. She swam in every river, lake, pond, and stream from Washington to Idaho and south to Texas.
I am taking my grief, trying to get our Kerrville newspaper to start up a weekly Pet page that people can celebrate all life, and passing of our Best friends. I will copy your story to show the editor how much your story Im sure helped you heal a little.
People want to see me rescue a dog, which my girl Leakey (like Leakey, TX) is, but I have made the sad trip to the shelter. I just cant take the chance and spend the next best years of my life on a dog that is not a Lab. I fish like crazy and need a water dog that will sit for hours by me and not be running for the hills if she hears a thunderbolt. I am 46 and my new pal will probably live 10 years or more. Why do I feel guilty for buying a dog?
I love labs they are loyal to the last second when I held my baby and loved her in the back of my Expedition where she loved to be. Our Vet did that last ride with as much dignity as could be.
I believe our pets will be with us in Heaven. In fact the night she died I got an ear whisper and she said, "Momma, wait til you see the fishing here."
Enjoyed very much "Free Dog" in Januarys 2013 edition of Texas Fish & Game magazine.
I must say, it really hit home and I almost aborted on reading it, due to the fact, I just lost my companion (Catahoula- Male) October 4, 2012.
His name was Riley, and named after a longtime friend of mine, that passed away in 2004.
I raised him from a pup and he was 13 months old when ran over by a truck and killed instantly.
Me, living on my ranch and a reclusive bachelor, that dog was everything to me! He was by my side every waking minute of the day. Helped me in the everyday chores of ranching, egg production, gardening, etc.
Wanted to let you know, you arent the only one that has lost something. We are a brotherhood.
Glen Rose, TX
Watch Your Back
Lou Marullo didnt relate anything in his column, "What Has Happened to Hunting," that would cause me to suspect that whoever sabotaged his deer stand and removed the camera with possible incriminating images was a thief, a vandal, or necessarily a hunter.
Someone doesnt like you as an individual or hunters in general. Please dont confuse criminal activity with a breach of hunter ethics.
Watch your back, and check unattended equipment before use.