September 20, 2010


This post is dedicated to my red-headed, doggy friend
of many years; my hiking companion, guardian, and escort.
A guy with a somewhat abrasive exterior,
and a huge loyal heart.


There are those that find Huck to be a bit much.
He can be very loud, demanding, pushy...
I can see where they're coming from;
he knows how to push annoyance to its extremes.

But then there is his very enthusiastic fan club -
a group of very special people that happen
to have the ability to see the good in this dog.
The people who see him as a rusty bundle of personality;
and truly love him for it.

Huck was actually Buster's dog to begin with...

Buster was the first pet we got after moving to our farm,
and he just never made a good loner dog.
He would get scared when he was alone, and chew things up...
So, when he was about six months old, we brought
him home a little black lab puppy that we bought at the
Amish auction for five dollars. "Smokey."
Buster took care of that little puppy like a mother would,
and they did everything together.
Several months later, Smokey was run over by a car
and had to be put to sleep.

I've never seen a dog as devastated as Buster was,
he cried all night long.

The very next day we went looking for a new puppy,
and didn't have to look far -
the red dog down the road had a litter.
And in that dusty old barn,
we first saw our little Huck.

(A baby Huck with Dad - 1999)

Buster and Huck have been inseparable ever since.

A few years ago, Huck had to spend the night at the vet's
office for treatment. That's when we discovered Buster's
name for Huck... "Raรบl."
(Think Spanish pronunciation - "Ra'-oool"...)
He sat by my window and howled Huck's "name" all night.

They've been buddies for over ten years now.

That's what brings us to the present,
and the fact that personality ripens with age,
as every photo I take of Huck attests.

At some point, early on in Huck's decade with us,
he gradually starting becoming "my dog."
I love the fact that he has always been such a rascal;
I love the spunk in his eye.
I laugh at the way he squeals to show how much he detests hugs,
and the way he hates bathing and brushing like a little boy.
He's tough.

I can't get over the way he just stares into the camera
and manages to be so photogenic.
Mom has stated on various occasions that she's sure she
has seen a photo of every facial expression that the dog can
make by now, and I can quit photographing him anytime.

Or at least give it a break.

I'm still thinking about that.

So Huck is pretty much my dog by now, yes,
but I'm accepting that it's not at all how he sees it.
I'm actually his person.
He takes it upon himself to keep an eye on me;
and go everywhere I go.

He thinks I need him,
and he's probably right.

There are many tough childhood memories where -
if I were to rewind and look closely,
Huck would be right there -
doing his best to make everything okay again.

He's quirky.

He take his naps on our front porch pew.

A few years ago he had a dislocated elbow injury,
and had to wear a blue cast for six weeks.
The funny thing about it is that he's had a tendency
to cross his front legs when he is lying down ever since...
I took this photo a few days ago -
Huck's not usually allowed in the house,
but the guys were shooting guns outside,
and Huck is very anti-guns...
So he snuck inside,
and for once - we let him stay.
Just for a little bit.

This is Huck.

My buddy of eleven years.

I hope you're here for a lot longer yet, Huck.

Thanks for everything.


Hannah Mendenhall said...

Baby Huck : ) Very cute.

Amanda said...

That's precious....even if you're not a member of the Huck Fan! I think I am now though after that ;)

Jill said...

I like Huck! My sweet Abby dog and I have a close relationship, too. She keeps a watchful eye on me wherever I go, and when something goes wrong, she is ready to do her doggy best to make it better.

I'd sure like to meet Huck. He reminds me of Abby.


Miss Breezy said...

Huck! We love you!!! Give him a squeeze for me. ;)