Goodnight, Precious Girl

Goodnight, Precious Girl

I am not a talented enough writer to adequately describe the heart and soul of our Great Dane, Echo.  I’ve written of her in other posts; the adventures, the craziness, the health issues, the uncontrollable urge to eat food not meant for dogs.

She is the gentlest giant I’ve ever been around.  Seven grandchildren have used her as a pillow, a dress up doll, and a protector from the dark.  When we brought hatchling chickens home to populate our new hen house, she laid prone on her side and let them nestle against her, climb over her, and use her for warmth.193137_10150115315733879_85528_o

Those giant, expressive brown eyes have persuaded me to give up my blanket, share my dinner, upgrade to a King size mattress so there was room for her, and rearrange my work station so that she could keep her head in my lap.  Children are drawn to her everywhere she goes, even those that are on edge around dogs.  She always welcomes other dogs into her circle, respecting the older ones and romping like a giant rabbit with energetic puppies.


She loves a good car trip, stretching out as much as she can for drives to Florida or Canada.  She’s a water dog, and it’s impossible not to laugh at how much she looks like an otter when she swims.  She has an obsession with deer, and nothing puts a spring in her step like seeing one dart into the woods and giving chase after them.  I’ve always wondered if she just thinks they’re dogs too, leggy like she is.


Mostly, though, she is a couch potato.  She loves to lounge, to cuddle, to nap, to snuggle, to stretch, to snore.  She has this look about her as if to communicate that it is just exhausting to be as beautiful, as big, and as regal as she is.  She defines beauty sleep.  It always surprises me when people think Echo is a “he”.  She has such a girly air about her, as well as an endless supply of pink collars.  If she were human, she’d be Cleopatra, with humans feeding her bacon while she stretched out on her favorite blanket.


She is a perfect dog for this family.  She is an excellent companion for Moose, a great teacher for Pickle, and for her humans, she is a dependable source of comfort and loyalty.  If I’m ill, she doesn’t leave my side until Steve forces her outside.  While many people use “baby talk” when speaking to their pets, Echo somehow coaxes more of a “cooing” from her humans.  Oh, and she winks.  She’s a big winker, and it always makes me laugh.

echo misses george

********************************************************************************************************************************************* All of this was written last night, as my whimpering dog lay across my lap trying to sleep.  I petted her, cooed to her, and tried to comfort her as she struggled to stand up, finally giving in to emptying her bladder where she lay; not something my dignified beauty is used to.  Moose tried to lick her face, and she growled and snapped at him.  That was a first.  The other dogs kept their distance.  This morning, I called the vet, and off we went.  We talked it over, we looked at options, and I made the decision to end the pain.  Today, the Rainbow Bridge had a beautiful, elegant, sweet, loyal princess cross over it.  I sat on the floor with her in my lap one last time in the exam room, with my daughter by my side being brave for me, and we hugged her neck and cooed to her for the last time as she drifted away.

We are all so lucky to have had these years with her.  I will always be grateful.  I hope I made the correct decision today.  I talked to Echo about it for a long time during the night, and while it may just be my mind creating my own comfort, I think she gave me the go ahead.

Rest well, sweet girl.  You have certainly left your mark on all of your humans.


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