Wednesday, December 1, 2010



The Orange County Media has placed a value of $500,000 on the 4 dogs that were stolen, along with the van that contained them, en route to the Eukanuba Dog Show in California. But, as any dog lover knows, our best friends our priceless.


This post is dedicated to Trace, Didi, Bunny and Peter. We hope you come home safely and soon.

"I reach out my hand to stroke his hair and he's not there. Oh, how I wish that wasn't so. I'll always love a dog named Beau." - Jimmy Stewart

My dad remembers first watching Jimmy Stewart recite this poem on Johnny Carson when he was a freshman in college. He told me he had forgotten about it until a Facebook friend posted it recently. Thinking about those poor dogs that were stolen on their way to the Eukanuba dog show in California makes it even more poignant. It is sad to lose a best friend and heartbreaking to think you may never see them again. Or to know you will never see them again. And like Jimmy says, I sometimes wake up in the middle of the night. I wake up at night and I have this fear...of the dark, of life, of lots of things. And it makes me feel better to have him there. I think he feels the same.

"The truth is that it's just really hard for me to get to sleep without a dog in my bedroom. It's funny about that. I once had a dog named Beau. He used to sleep in a corner of the bedroom. Some nights, though, he would sneak onto the bed and lie right in between Gloria and me. I know that I should have pushed him off the bed, but I didn't. He was up there because he wanted me to pat his head, so that's what I would do. Somehow, my touching his hair made him happier, and just the feeling of him laying against me helped me sleep better. After he died there were a lot of nights when I was certain that I could feel him get into bed beside me and I would reach out and pat his head. The feeling was so real that I wrote a poem about it and about how much it hurt to realize that he wasn't going to there any more." - Jimmy Stewart

I later learned just how intense his feelings were for his dog Beau. At the time, Stewart was making a picture which was shooting on location in Arizona. One evening he got a phone call from his veterinarian, a Dr. Keagy. The call was about Beau. Keagy told him that Beau was very sick. He was having trouble breathing and was in considerable pain. The disease had progressed to the point that it was obvious to Keagy that the dog couldn't be saved. He was calling for permission to end Beau's life quickly. Stewart's wife Gloria said that she couldn't make that decision since Beau was Jimmy's dog. "I can't just tell you to put him to sleep like this," Stewart said, "Not over the phone--not without seeing him. You keep him alive and I'll be there." Stewart was always known as an easy actor to work with, who never made excessive demands. So, the director was taken aback when he went to him to ask for a few days off to fly home to see to his dog. The leave was granted and Stewart got to sit with Beau for a long while before making the decision. He later admitted that when he left the veterinarian's office he had to sit in his car for around 10 minutes, just to clear his eyes of tears, so that it would be safe to drive home.

I'll always love a man named Jimmy Stewart.

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