He lay on his side on the lawn, a pink bougainvillea flower at his throat. The children had dropped it on him in a farewell gesture. His body was still warm as I stroked him and said my goodbyes to this loving, faithful dog, a part of our lives for the last 13 years.
Eddie had died of a heart attack – my father-in-law and husband were with him in the end. They say he whimpered, reached out with his paw, and then his heart just stopped beating.
We will miss him. He was especially gentle with children – Laila loved to ruffle his ears, and when she got too rough, I would stop her. But he never pushed her away or lost his patience.
He was also very brave and never hesitated to take on dogs twice his size. He had a bad habit of running out of the gate the minute he spotted a new (dog) face and would do his best to chase the intruder away. These shock and awe tactics never failed to shock and awe the poor recipients – and after us chasing him around and breaking up the (mock) fight, Eddie would be escorted back into the house, quite the hero.
He came from a long line of dachshunds and his illustrious father was Rosco – a character straight out of a Disney movie. Rosco, legend said, managed to terrorise and chase away a stray monkey that was harassing the neighbourhood. But his most endearing habit was to pick up a biscuit or snack thrown to him, retire to a comfortable spot (far from the madding crowd), and proceed to eat it, slowly and surely. Rosco had dignity. And this he passed on to Eddie.
Ishaan, my son, wanted to know if dogs go to heaven. ‘Yes,’ I said. ‘Eddie has gone to join his parents, sisters, brothers and friends. He must be having a whale of a time.’
Farewell sweet Eddie. Till we meet again.