Sunday, June 01, 2008

This was... my pet

His name was Coltrane. And I have to say, he was the best dog ever. I grew up with many pets, always dogs but also ducks, birds and a cockatoo who is now 34 years old.

Coltrane was the first (and so far only) dog I bought myself, as an adult. I bought him with my then partner (TP) and he was our baby.


I took this photo of him the day we brought him home. We went to the breeder to look at the two standard poodle pups he had. One was bigger and more independent. The other smaller and seemed a bit needy. He went up to TP, nibbled his nose and licked his glasses. TP said to me "You can choose, but can we have this one?" And so, Coltrane came home with us.


We always said we'd never let him sleep on the bed (he was going to be a big dog), but then at six months he got really sick. That went out the window, and since then, always slept at the end of the bed, didn't move all night. In the mornings, he'd wake me when he wanted to go outside. He'd just hold his face close to mine, which would usually bring me out of my slumber. If that didn't work, he'd very gently rub my cheek with his wet nose.
He had an elastic fetish. He loved anything that stretched, and believed it was even better if it smelt of TP or myself. Being big, he'd reach up to the dresser and find TP's watch, a ski watch with an elastic band. He'd put it on his nose with the band through his month and wear it around for as long as we'd let him. He'd prance around as if to say, "Look at me, I look like dad", just like a kid dressing up in their parents' clothes.
We had to make sure the laundry door was closed properly, there were too many delights for him there. One night, TP and I were having a dinner party. We'd obviously not closed the laundry door properly. Coltrane came up to the dining room with one of my red, lacy bras. He had the cup in his mouth and was using the shoulder strap like an exercise band. Luckily it was a dinner with friends!
He was friendly, loving, obedient and ever so protective. I swear he was gay and used to pick up every boy of that persuasion on the street. He loved to play in puddles, but was scared of waves. He always wanted to be with his mum however, so if I'd go out in the surf, as much as he hated it, he'd come with me. He was super-fit and would run for six hours each Saturday and Sunday, up and down mountains beside TP as he went mountain bike riding.
When TP and I split, we made the very difficult decision that he would go to live with him. Both TP and I worked from home, but while I was actually out most of the day on photoshoots and in the darkroom, TP was physically at home so Coltrane would have company. He'd come back to my place for weekend stays.
He died before his time. The sickness he got at six months old, meant that he couldn't fight off illnesses. He got very sick and passed away while I was still in Japan, the Christmas before I was due to come back to Australia.
I still miss him dearly, but life is better for having had him in it.


Thank you to Two Peas in a Pod for this week's This is… theme.

AND, if you're still with me.... Tomorrow night is the night! I'm going to finally put up the giveaway and have some exciting (for me anyway) news... I had hoped to get it done last week, but it turned out to be an exhausting one at work. Sorry!

17 comments:

Two Peas In a Pod said...

What a beautiful dog. I know all about letting an animal go. It can be the hardest thing to do. But your words are right, life is better for having had him in it. Thanks for sharing. He is beautiful!!
Kyla

JuliaB said...

ahhh. What a lovely story and what a lovely dog.

Maureen said...

Oh what a touching story. Coltrane made some lovely music in your life it seems. True to his naming.

Jenny said...

What a beautiful dog and such a lovely story-he certainly had a good life.

Bec said...

This story has brought tears to my eyes. He sounds like a wonderful dog, and it's lovely to hear how much joy he brought you :)

Hannah said...

He looks like such a noble & intelligent dog. A beautiful story too.

flossy-p said...

ohh, that's such a beautiful post. I love the photo's of Coltrane growing up, in with the stories of his life. Sorry you lost him so early. Must have been devastating.

It's great to have such fun memories though, I'd have done anything to have been a dinner guest on the night of the red-lacy bra show! ;)

Leni and Rose said...

What a sad story...but uplifting at the same time. Dogs can bring such happiness to our lives, can't they. He was very cute!

Sasparilla Sue said...

Your dog was gorgeous. I love that he had a thing for elastic! It's the quirks that make them so unique and even more lovable. Coltrane's story is very touching. Thanks for sharing it with all of us.

Sybilla said...

Such a moving story, Melanie! Thanks for sharing.
Take care dear :)

Fuji Mama said...

Beautiful post.

nadia said...

I think these photohraphs are really good, i love the feel of them! wonderful blog.

Lisa said...

Bless beautiful Coltrane. That was such a loving tribute.

xx

BigCat said...

What a beautiful story. I am teary and laughing with the emotion of it. Great photos too. He was a spunk.

RitaS said...

I just want to comment how beautiful Coltrane is. Reading stories like this, even though it has been more than 2 yrs, still makes my heart ache for my dog - though visions of him running through heaven's meadows helps a lot. We truly are blessed when we have shared life with animals - HUGS for your loss.

Anonymous said...

As I deliver a new babe into this world, another person, or animal dies-I believe God has picked his angels to be with him and Coltrane is now one of them-he is happy in doggy heaven. He was sent as a pup to bring joy-even though 6 months seems too soon. But what an inpact he has had for everyone and it was his time to return-he left love and will never be forgotten!

Juddie said...

Oh! there's nothing like having a really special dog in your life. I'm so sorry you lost him; this post is a testament to some wonderful memories.

He looks like a beautiful boy!

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