In 1996 my department got a call about a stray dog hanging around the Allsup’s Convenience store on the edge of town. I spent a week trying to snag that little dog, but she was always gone by the time I pulled up.

Getting a bit frustrated, I walked around the area, and found where she was denning, but I also found paw prints where she was jumping onto a discarded sofa, and hopping over onto the Allsup’s dumpster. Inside the dumpster, I found a whole bunch of neatly eviscerated burritos.

So, I parked my cruiser in the alley with the passenger side door open, and a fresh chimichanga laying in the seat. The evening was warm, I had a good tape in the player, and next thing I know, I’m waking up from a light doze and Moira was in the passenger seat, in the exact pose you see above, only she had the chimichanga in her paws and was eating the goodie out of one end.

I shut the door, drove home and she trotted in the front door right behind me, just like she’d lived there her entire life.

Today, I brought her body home from the vet and buried her in the back-yard. I would say that she’s laid to rest under her favorite tree, but truth be told, Miss Moira was quite happy to be an indoor dog. She never spent any more time outside than was strictly necessary to conduct business, then scooted back inside right smartly.


I miss her already.


Thank you
We surrender!

72 thoughts on “Moira”

  1. My condolences, LawDog.

    I’ve buried two of my family’s canine buddies, and it’s never easy or enjoyable. I still miss them both.

  2. I am so sorry to hear about Miss Moira, LD.

    My heart aches for you, as I really do know how you feel. I’ve had to put down my Cocker Spaniel and my cat, my best buddy, Ronald. Even after 5 years, I still miss my cat terribly.

    You’re in my thoughts and prayers, and if you ever need a friend, all you have to do is yell.

    Many hugs to you.

  3. Thoughts and prayers, Dog.

    We’ve buried our share.

    It’s never easy.

    May her grass be cool and green, and not too far from the couch.

    ~~ Garry
    ~~ ArfinGreebly (THR)

  4. Words just don’t do it justice. Lost my share of companions of the quad footed set in my time.

    Its hard right now but, remember them good times bud.

  5. Sorry to hear that, ‘Dog.

    The critters do grow on you, don’t they?

    It’s been almost five years since Sam (a.k.a. The Big Yellow Dog) went to the Big Couch in the Sky, and it still twists my guts when I look at pictures of the old rascal.

  6. I am a cat person, but very well understand the pain.

    I still remember dogs being put down when I was a child and I still tear up.

    Our “last” cat died last August. We cannot face the pain once again.

    Nothing can replace a loving furry face in our lives.

    My condolences

  7. I just don’t know where to start. Knowing you and the depth of your attachment to those furry little beasties that always seem to be sharing your atmosphere, I just don’t think anything I say will be sufficient.

    However, in a feeble attmept we will have warm brownies or blueberry pie when you get here Friday. Your choice. Just let the misses know which you want.


  8. Mr. Dog, sir, you have my hearfelt sympathy for the loss of your family member.

  9. Prayers & condolences to you & your ‘pack’ on the loss of Moira.

  10. Oh, ‘Dog, I don’t know what to say… sorry just seems inadequate at a time like this. Those sweet, loyal beasties really wiggle and squirm their way into our hearts so quickly. I know she had a good home and a loving family with you and yours once she got there.
    I’m gonna go hug Boo and give her and Ben treats, just because I can.
    You and Moira are in my thoughts.

  11. Law Dog,
    sounds like a good ten years more than she would have lasted without your care. St. Peter will likely have her waiting for you. Wouldn’t rightly be a paradise with out our furry family.

    We miss them all.

  12. Sigh. I so know how you feel.
    I have had only 2 dogs in my short life, one (my first) was “happy”, a springer spaniel. I cried when I buried her. Its never easy.
    there’s one more that’ll go..and I’m sure that when he does, he’ll have more people at his funeral than a person…I dread that day.
    He’s been well loved, much like Moira and I’m sure when he passes, he’ll meet moira…perhaps if he’s lucky, she’ll share a little of that burrito.

  13. I’ve been there too. Sorry to hear it. Like others have said, it still hurts.

    “sounds like a good ten years more than she would have lasted without your care. St. Peter will likely have her waiting for you. Wouldn’t rightly be a paradise with out our furry family.

    We miss them all.”

    This reminds me of a story someone told on THR… a guy was walking along a dirt road with a dog, but he knew he’d just died and the dog had been dead 20 years. He walked to a set of what seemed to be the pearly gates, Heaven, at the top of the hill, but when he asked if they had water for his dog, they said “we’re sorry but we don’t allow pets”. So he told them he’d be moving on with his dog. The next gate he came to was an old-looking farm gate in a fence that was overgrown with honeysuckle. An old guy opened it and welcomed him to Heaven and told him draw a bucket of water for him and his dog and sit in the shade and rest a while. The man said “I thought that was Heaven back at the top of that hill; don’t you get angry at them for using your name?” The man who let them in said “we’re not angry at Hell for using our name; just glad they weed out the ones that’d leave their best friend behind.”


  14. My condolences on your loss. Dogs share our lives for far too short a time.

    We had to put down a much loved dog a few years ago. The kids talked me into adopting another one only a few months later. I’m glad we did. She’s not a replacement, of course, but as my then 9 year old said, she helps to fill the hole in my heart.

    I hope it won’t be too long before you have another beast to help fill that hole in your heart.

  15. She’s in a place now with plenty of warm breezes, tasty burritos, slow cats and plenty of folks to scratch behind her ears.

    Take heart, Dawg. She leaves a hole behind, but plenty of good memories to fill it.

  16. Ah, so sorry.

    I had my Babee put to sleep one March day. Went about my house-business to shaking out the throw rugs. And found myself wailing outside in the cold.


  17. Oh, no.

    ‘Dog, you have my deepest sympathies. I know I still miss my cat all the time.

  18. ‘Dawg, you gave that pup a happier life. Keep the good thoughts, even when they make you sad.
    My youngest brother’s lady asked him why he had a dog collar in his car, as he doesn’t have a dog. It’s from “Luther”, the dog he brought home from the streets of Philadelphia. Ten years later he had to have the dog put down. And that was about 20 years ago.
    When he brought Luther home, my brother told Mom that if the dog had to go, he’d go, too. She told him she’d have to think about it. The dog became her defender against anyone and anything that might hurt her.]

  19. LawDog, Words fail me. My heart feels the pain of your loss.

    May you find a new friend to help fill the void in your life.

  20. I have walked some miles in the shoes that lost your dear Moira. It breaks my heart to lose a beloved dog or cat and tears are rolling down my face as I read about yours.
    My sympathy, Brother. I know how much it hurts.

  21. I am sorry for you loss, some day I hope you find another four legged friend to help with your pain.

    I still hope to someday be the person that my dog knows i am.

  22. Aww man, I’m sorry. I’ve buried a few over the years and it’s never easy. I dread the day my current rescued stray, Bob The Big Dumb Dog, shuffles off. They have a way of worming their ways into our hearts.

  23. That’s a shame, Dawg. Our thoughts and prayers.

    Hope all ten years were good ones. I’d bet they were for her.

  24. Dang, LawDog, I’m sorry that she’s gone.

    It’s hard; I lost Sam (the Fire Dog) two years ago last fall. I sure miss the little guy; still smile when I think about him.

    I hope that Moira will be bringing you smiles for years to come.

    -Happy Bob on THR

  25. You have my condolences over the loss of your loved one. Dogs are a mighty special friend to kind hearted people.

  26. My condolences, LawDog – it’s been years since I lost a well-furred friend, but as others have said, it always hurts.

    Our friends await us, and in the meantime, chocolate is a comfort unto the soul…

  27. My condolances. I did the same thing last Memorial Day with my dog, Sassy.

  28. My condolences LawDog. One of my cats died a few weeks ago, I still miss him.

    “No Heaven will ever Heaven be, unless my cats (and dogs and other pets) are there to welcome me”.

  29. My condolences. As others have said, I’ve buried my share, as well. I’m sure you and others have heard of the Rainbow Bridge…if not, look it up.

  30. Geee, LD, I offer my condolences on your loss!

    I’ve had many, many dogs over the years and have buried them all but one. Each and every time it has hurt immeasurabley. After our Cocker, Taz, passed we grieved for several years until our current 1/2 Golden, 1/2 Black Lab mix came into our life. Stormy is the absolute best dog that either my wife or I have ever had, and she’s spends absolutely no more time outside than she needs to.

    Miss Moira will always remain a part of you just as Rex (my first dog) and all of the others have always remained with me.


  31. I have always thought that Kipling said it best.

    THERE is sorrow enough in the natural way
    From men and women to fill our day;
    And when we are certain of sorrow in store,
    Why do we always arrange for more?
    Brothers and Sisters, I bid you beware
    Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.

    Buy a pup and your money will buy
    Love unflinching that cannot lie—
    Perfect passion and worship fed
    By a kick in the ribs or a pat on the head.
    Nevertheless it is hardly fair
    To risk your heart for a dog to tear.

    When the fourteen years which Nature permits
    Are closing in asthma, or tumour, or fits,
    And the vet’s unspoken prescription runs
    To lethal chambers or loaded guns,
    Then you will find—it’s your own affair—
    But . . . you’ve given your heart to a dog to tear.

    When the body that lived at your single will,
    With its whimper of welcome, is stilled (how still!).
    When the spirit that answered your every mood
    Is gone—wherever it goes—for good,
    You will discover how much you care,
    And will give your heart to a dog to tear.

    We’ve sorrow enough in the natural way,
    When it comes to burying Christian clay.
    Our loves are not given, but only lent,
    At compound interest of cent per cent.
    Though it is not always the case, I believe,
    That the longer we’ve kept ’em, the more do we grieve.
    For, when debts are payable, right or wrong,
    A short-time loan is as bad as a long—
    So why in—Heaven (before we are there)
    Should we give our hearts to a dog to tear?

  32. Sorry to hear the news LawDog. I have lost pets too and it IS loosing a family member. I guess you allways miss them but it seems to get a bit easier as time goes by. I just keep telling myself I will meet them agian on the other side some day. . . . I think this poem says it all . . .


  33. Moira was a very lucky puppy when she met you LawDog.

    I always find this poem to help with the passing on ones furbaby:

    Rainbow Bridge

    Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

    When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.
    There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.
    There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

    All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.
    The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

    They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

    You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

    Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together….

    Author unknown…

  34. You gave her a good home LD, and a better life then she would have had on the streets and in return she loved you. I’m sorry for your loss.

  35. LawDog, I’m sorry to hear of your loss. And I kinda know what you’re going through, we had to have on of our dogs put down a few months ago. I still get a lump in my throat when I think about it, and my eyes start to sting a little….

  36. I’m sorry for your loss. She looks almost exactly like my Max, who is my young crippled dog- spinal injury- he’s a front-drive model.

    He probably doesn’t have long, either. I just found a couple of large lymph nodes in his neck. We’re still trying to get over SWMBO’s 19 year old dog leaving us last fall. For that matter, I get all misty over those I lost over 20 yeas ago.

    I feel for you; I feel with you.


  37. I once took in a cat from a friend that was moving away. What was meant to be a temporary arrangement turned into 15 years of companionship. There were bleak times in my life when I know in my soul that the only thing that kept me on the straight and narrow was having that little fur ball depending on me.

    She was fully grown when she came to me – at least 3 or 4 years old, but she was as lean and fit and as active as a kitten all the years of her life. Until one October evening, when I came home to find her seemingly lifeless body in my easy chair.

    She had had a stroke – I had never heard of dogs or cats being subject to that particular insult, but it does happen.

    She spent a few days in intensive care at an emergency veterinary facility and, just when I was about to give up hope, she began to weakly respond to me on one of my before and after work visits. She tried so hard to stand on the final visit that I couldn’t bring myself to let her go. If she wanted to fight, by God I’d do all I could to help her.

    For nearly two months she tried to claw her way back to health, showing gradually increasing improvement on an almost daily basis. Always a fastidiously clean cat, she was forced to suffer the supreme indignity of soiling herself, but tolerated the constant cleaning and bathing – better I think than I would have. My regular vet taught me how to get food down her, administer her various medications and subcutaneous fluids and monitored her condition every few days to make sure that we weren’t causing her more harm than good.

    One of the proudest moments in my life came about four weeks after the stroke when we visited Dr. Lopez and demonstrated her newfound skill: walking. More of a lurching stagger really, but I thought it was the most graceful thing I’d ever seen. The staff at the clinic was duly impressed as well. From that point on, I actually had to corral her when I left the house, to keep her from getting into trouble.

    Unfortunately, what had been a manageable onset of renal problems before this episode reared its ugly head: from a healthy eight pounds and change, she had lost nearly half of her body weight before her long climb to recovery. As indomitable as her spirit was, her body just wasn’t equal to the task.

    On December 6th, 2006 I came home to find her curled up in her bed, relaxed and at peace at last.

    Reading your post; all the pain from over a year ago washed over me as if it were fresh. But, I wouldn’t give up those years together for anything, not even the torturous last few weeks. Most of what I know about being a responsible adult human, I learned from caring for that little kitty.

    Goodbye Ashley and Moira; better friends than we deserve. Godspeed.

    Joe Allen

  38. LD, I know just how you feel. It’s amazing how a cat or dog can grow on us and how much we can miss them when they are gone. Jim B

  39. My condolences.

    Nothing gets the mean old conservatives quicker than the story of a good dog. It gets mighty dusty around us although it seems nobody will believe that. We all hate it when our friends die and most of us eagerly seek out another. We’re gluttons for this punishment.

    I don’t know exactly what you believe about the subject, but I believe that I’ll know hell, if I see it, for the lack of dogs. God willing I’ll be in a land of many dogs and be with my old friends for eternity. I wish the same for you.

  40. I dropped my plans to become a vet after enough years as a tech showed me too many people who truly regarded their pets as disposable and their suffering of no great consequence. I found I couldn’t quite see them as fully human anymore.

    I knew the man I was going to marry when my savage-hearted Siamese took an instant shine to him. The cat had great judgment, really better than mine at the time since I’d been thinking about breaking up with him. (Although he’s now more my husband’s cat than mine… oh well.)

    And now I’m tearing up looking at Moira and thinking of friends I’ve lost and the day I must lose the ones I’ve got now… the cycle of pain and joy for every animal lover.

  41. LD sorry for your loss. Had to have one of mine put down last August and still miss her. I though I was a pretty tough guy, but cried like a baby. No matter how bad a day you are having they are always glad to see you.

  42. Dear Law Dog,

    Thank you for sharing Moira with us. Your elegant and moving story is a noble testament. She will not be forgotten.

    We owe our dogs a lot, individually and collectively. For it was the dogs who domesticated man, by the way, and not the other way around. But that’s another story.

    I like the yarn about the recently deceased man who meets his previously deceased dog and wanders with him through the Pearly Gates. It is an old story, and something similar can be found in the conclusion of the Mahabharata.

    The detail that Moira liked to be an indoors dog was particularly poignant. I guess she figured she had put in enough time outside.

    The main thing now is to get some more dogs. When my great and irreplaceable dog died, we got three . . . the will never replace her, but they are still good to be around.

  43. My sincerest condolences. I, too, know how difficult it is to bury a beloved pet. My baby girl, Peaches, (Greyhound/Shepherd mix) will be turning 14 in April. She is my heart, and she is declining in health, thus, my heart is already beginning to break even though she is still with me.

    I will keep you in my prayers, and may God bring you peace during this difficult time.

  44. My sincerest sympathy, LawDog. She looks like our Sedona. She’d rather curl up in our laps than just about anything. (All 70 pounds of her!)

    There was a reason that God raised many companions for Adam before Eve. He subjected both the wolf and the lion to us so we could know that HE can subject the wolf and the lion IN us.

    St. Martin de Porres rehabilitated stray dogs & cats in 16th century Lima. God sent a huge hound (named Grigio) to protect St. John Bosco in the slums of 19th century Italy. I’m sure that Moira will put in a good word for you when your timew comes, too.


  45. Lawdog:

    I’m very sorry for your loss. All our dogs have always been strays, and they are all part of the family.

    My condolences to you.

    Mad Jack

  46. LawDog,

    I’m late in coming to give my condolences. All the best to you and keep your powder dry.

  47. Please allow a {lapsed} Catholic to reassure you – St. Francis will care for Moira, keeping her happy, until you’re able to join her ………………
    She was a lucky little lady, that her ‘god’ was you …………… and she’ll be waiting for you ………………..
    I am so sorry for your loss ………………..

  48. Cheers LawDog,
    Lost my “best friend” about 15 years ago – I still mourn that old dog! He rode in the helo with me, met me when I returned from flights, always had a “wag-tail” to tell me he was glad to see me.

    We stayed in motels that didn’t take “dogs” – but he was always welcome. They even sent him addressed post cards inviting him back – didn’t say sh*t about me or the wife – but they wanted him to return!

    Love them while you have them, cherish them when they’re gone – but always hold them in your heart – it’s where they hold you!!!

    Gentle winds,

  49. Please accept my late, but nonetheless heartfelt condolences.

    As many of us here have said, we’ve mostly all experienced the pain you now suffer.

    We can but stand quietly beside you here, now.

    Take what time you must for this. In the meanwhile, know that many prayers are with you.

    Sloop New Dawn
    Galveston, TX

  50. What a fine girl she must have been, and what a blessing for you both that you had the kind patience to reel her in all those years ago. My heart goes out to you.

  51. With tears in my eyes, I went around and petted all three of my boys after reading your lovely obit for Moira.

    I know how hard it is to lose a companion.

    I like to believe that they are roaming with the rest of the pack across the skies, and occasionally think that I can hear them as they pass by.

  52. My deepest condolences. I don’t remember who said it, but a definition of heaven that I’ve always loved goes something like this, “Heaven is where all the dogs you’ve ever loved are waiting for you when you die.” I’m sure Ms. Moira is waiting for you.

  53. Darn blogger seems to have eaten my original comment from several days ago, LD. Please know that you and Moria have been in my thoughts.

    She’s playing now, in a place where the rabbits are slow, the smells are always interesting and there is no pain or fear. She, like my Molly girl, went from a dark future to a warm, wonderful place with someone to love her. You did a good thing for her, LD, and someday you’ll only remember the good times.

  54. LawDog,

    Just damn. Words fail. “I’m sorry for you” is soooo lame sounding, but I am.

  55. My husband and I send our deepest condolences and sympathies on the loss of your sweet Moira. It’s never easy saying farewell to a beloved furry family member.

    She was probably greeted by our beloved Cocoa (who passed away Nov 25) when she made her journey across the rainbow bridge.

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