When my father passed away eight years ago, he left me his dog, a very large Irish Wolfhound – wolf mix named Lobo. He was already beyond 10 years old at that time and passed away yesterday at an age that must have been closing in on twenty, at least. He was a kind spirit who, on occasion, broke away to run with the coyotes and chase deer. Wherever he is now, I hope he is able to run and chase to his heart’s content… and maybe keep Daddy company in the process.
I wrote a fictionalized version of Lobo into the opening of my book Terra Incognita, portraying him as a playful and heroic monster of a dog. I choose to remember him that way… In honor of his memory, what follows is an excerpt from chapter one of my story….
Like most of life’s extraordinary problems, Haylee Wells felt ill equipped to handle the beast hurtling toward her. The monster’s yellow eyes were focused intently upon her, while its tongue, dripping saliva, lolled from its mouth. Haylee’s eyes darted left and right, looking for cover – a door to slip through, anything – but could find nothing. In a matter of seconds, it was lunging for her, and she felt the air leave her lungs as she hit the ground. Before she could take a breath, her face was plastered with the dog’s wet kisses. Laughter bubbled up in her throat, and she tried to shove the more than one hundred pound wolf-hybrid off her to no avail. Holding the dog an arm’s length away, she was able to draw her knees up to her chest and use her legs to roll him to the side. Once she was up, the dog remained with his tummy in the air, smiling at her. Bending down to rub his belly, and trying to sound scolding but failing miserably, she said, “You’re really too big to be doing that.” She gave a little laugh and continued on her trek to the house across the lawn.
R.I.P. Lobo – you will be missed.