My family has always had dogs, except for the few months between the time we had to put my mom’s cocker spaniel to sleep and when we got our next dog. Our next dog was a beagle and black lab mix. He was really my dog. I fell in love with his picture in our newspaper. I thought of names and decided on the name “Marbles.” Barely anybody understood why I chose that name, but one person I knew immediately got it and said, “Oh! He’s named Marbles because he’d Marbled!” That was the exact reason that I named him Marbles. Marbled just didn’t sound good as a name.
My sister was afraid of him at first, because he was a little bigger. She hid in her room. However, Marbles was on alert and wanted to let us know that somebody was in her room. He was concerned that somebody that didn’t belong in our house was in our house. When we finally got Briana to open the door, Marbles was so happy and he jumped onto her bed and they immediately bonded! He often served her like a therapy dog and we found out this was great when she was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome.
Marbles was very smart and sometimes too smart for his own good. He knew tons of tricks and was always eager to please. I called him “the bestest doggie ever,” and I still say that he was. (My current dog, Woofles, is “my sweet wittle puppy dog.”)
Of course, all animals get older, and Marbles did as well. For a long time he was on only Lasix. Then we added Enalipril. This was because he had a heart murmur and congestive heart failure. However, he always seemed very alive and cheerful as long as I remembered to give him his medicine. If he started coughing, I’d give him some more Lasix.
That sad day did come. I wasn’t even sure it was happening, though. Marbles acted completely normal until the nighttime, and he still didn’t act that oddly then. He visited with my sister, who fed him chicken. He visited with me and had me pet him. He visited with my mom and had her pet him. (My Daddy had already passed away by this time and we were living in our new house.)
Marbles went outside and my mom’s little chihuahua mix, Niblet, followed. They both came back inside and I pet Marbles.
Marbles then went back outside and Niblet followed him. Niblet came back inside. I wasn’t sure if Marbles was still outside or if I had just missed him coming in.
I went outside and called him, hoping to hear him in the backyard. No such luck. I looked around and didn’t see him. I figured that I better go look in some of the smaller spaces that he liked. I walked and his body was laying behind the shed that we had built for storage of our adult tricycles and other tools and random items.
It was very sad, but the thing that was amazing is that he chose a place that said “family.” The shed was on a cement slab and we put our hand prints into the cement, as well as our names and the date. Included in those prints were Marbles’s paw prints as well. I had walked him in the cement so he would be included. He made sure that his very last bit of time spent on this earth said that his family was important to him!