For over a quarter of my life I have had this guy by side. He is named Lincoln because I adopted him after my mom died, and that is where she was from. I think we saved each other. He was a quirky pup who loved his family. Smart and resourceful, active and loyal. He had a white tip on his tail and the most beautiful green and yellow eyes. Possibly a 10” tongue, no joke. He was protective of me until I met Colin. It was then that he met his brother to be, Joker, and relaxed… even begin snoring like an old man. For many years, he went to work with Colin. Colin was always his primary walker and adventure partner. Lincoln loved to swim and considered himself a swim coach and lifeguard. If you were ever in the water near him, he worried incessantly. Running along the side of the pool and barking as you did laps, meeting you at each end. He was over the moon for Ellie. When she was an infant, he cried when she cried and licked away her tears (and any food scraps he could find). He put his ball in her car seat well before she knew how to throw it for him. Linc followed us in to her room for midnight diapers changes and feedings. He even got locked in her room for hours one time and did not bark so he wouldn’t wake her. He sat patiently staring at the door until we checked the monitor, and saw him waiting by the door. Ellie liked to walk him, dress him up, give him his vitamins and tell him what to do They were best buddies. Lincoln happily barked along when Colin played drums. He considered himself quite a singer and when we Colin, Ellie and I started singing and dancing, he always “sang” the loudest. He did not like car rides. He was terrible at selfies (he got that from me). Sledding with him was a disaster. He was always the “grandmother” of the group and worried we were going to crash or go to fast, so he would try to block the sled path or grab at you (w his mouth) to slow you down. There are a few family photos he isn’t in, videos he didn’t walk thru, or memories where he wasn’t present. He went to bed when I did and waited for me to wake each morning. Lifting and licking my hand if I took to long. I have a million photos of them and none of them capture how complex a dog he was. I can’t believe he is gone.

I was out of town last weekend and I was not there when he died. I keep finding myself looking for him or standing up to get him from outside. It has taken me a few days to write this down but I think it is important so I can start to say goodbye. To those who dont understand the love we can have for our pets, I hope someday you do. It is something special.

He did not ask for much but gave us all he could. We miss him dearly already. (adobe flash needed for slideshow below)

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