Here is a short article I wrote about my favourite dog.
Toby was a great dog. I walked him for more than six years, beginning in 1998. He had a tendency to get overexcited and dance and attempt to talk, a type of throaty whine. He would refuse to obey simple commands and often took to sulking when he couldn’t get his own way! I received a couple of friendly nips from him over the years and loved brushing him and feeding him biscuits.
Toby was full of antics. Once, when I was playing the first movement of Beethoven’s Waldstein on the piano, he began to dance around the room in excitement. Another occasion, during a Christmas meal, Toby kept picking up a tennis ball and beckoning for me to retrieve it, only for him to grab it again as soon as I reached for it, his eyes smiling with mischief.
Toby came to his new owners as a puppy after problems with his original owner, and signs of slight nervousness persisted throughout his life.
Sadly, Toby’s life came to an end in the spring of 2005 when his owners discovered that he’d lost the ability to stand up. After consulting with a vet, they decided to have him put to sleep, as he was about fifteen by then. According to a friend who helped escort Toby to the car, Toby looked extremely peaceful and content as his owner and the friend carried his basket to the car. He even managed to wag his tail.
I spent the first evening after his death celebrating his life rather than mourning for him, drinking to six years of memories and antics.