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A Tribute To Our Dog, River Jackson

Updated on October 20, 2014

A Tribute to River Jackson

River Jackson, or Jack as we called him, was a German Wirehaired Pointer. We picked him out of a litter of 4 males and 1 female when he was about 4 weeks old. If you have ever selected a dog, no matter the breed, from a litter of puppies you know how daunting a task that was. This was a pup that would be with us for a very long time and all those cute little puppy faces....well how do you pick just one?

We made our decision, put down a deposit and went home feeling exhuberant. We have a puppy!

Four weeks later we went to pick up our River Jackson. From that moment on we were in love with that dog.

Living with Jack

Our lives changed forever.

Having a puppy in the house was a lot of work but we enjoyed every minute of it. I would guess the potty training was the most time consuming because we had to keep our eyes on Jack all of the time. But, Jack exceeded all of our expectations. He was a fast learner and potty trained very easily. By the time he was 4 months old he was "speaking" (that's barking in human language) at the door when he wanted to go outside. He was also a very impatient dog. When he spoke we were to jump up immediately until we let him out the door. And, if we didn't? Well, his barking got louder.

Once we were confident in Jack's potty training he had the run of the house. He was king of our domain and he knew it. If we left him alone we discovered that he would lay on our bed until we got back. He didn't drink any water or eat the treat I would give him before we left. Once we were home it didn't take him long to fetch that treat and gobble it down.

Jack was guiding pheasant hunts by the time he was 6 months old. He took to hunting as he did with anything, very determined and focused. As his breed name suggests ( German Wirehaired Pointer ) Jack pointed the birds but to our amazement he also retrieved the birds. Not only did he retrieve but he seemed to know who brought the pheasant down and would deliver that bird to the feet of the shooter. Totally amazing.

We took Jack everywhere with us. He was very social and loved children. If we had an activity at church, other than the Sunday service, Jack went with us and greeted everyone with a sniff and a wag of the tail. Birthday parties at the grandchildrens, Jack was there getting his small taste of birthday cake and I might add, lots of attention. He loved to ride in the truck and look out the window. He especially got excited if we would see a squirrel or deer.

We miss him so very much. It has been a very difficult adjustment to make not having him with us. If you have lost a dog, you know exactly what I mean.

All About Jack

Our Serious Dog

Our Jack was a very serious dog with big, brown expressive eyes. You could look into his eyes and see joy, sadness and pain. I think all German Wirehaired Pointers have great eyes but I can tell you that Jack literally talked to you through his eyes.

We knew when he was happy and excited. His eyes would just sparkle. He knew the night before he was going on a pheasant hunt that he was going hunting the next morning. How he knew, well, we will never know but he knew. He stuck to you like glue and once you got the hunting gear around he just couldn't stand still.

We knew when he was sad. His eyes would look downcast and blue. If we had to go somewhere and couldn't take Jack with us we would have to say " Sorry, Jack but you need to stay home". You could almost see the tears in his eyes.

We knew when he was not feeling well. His eyes got small and he wouldn't look you in the eye. He wanted to be close to you but he wouldn't look at you. Oh, those eyes, those beautiful brown eyes.

Jack was a serious dog. Oh, he liked to play but his play was serious. He meant business when he chased that frisbee. He meant business when he played tug-of-war. And he certainly meant business while out hunting.

Whatever Jack was doing, he was doing it in a determined and focused way and he was doing it to the very best of his ability.

Favorite photo's/memories of Jack

Click thumbnail to view full-size

The Final Chapter

Loving a Dog Named Jack

By now you know how much we loved our dog named Jack. He was so special, so smart and so loving. Sometimes it felt like Jack knew what you were going to do before you did. I really can't explain it but he would beat you to where you were going to be. He knew so many "human" words. You need a bath and he would beat you to the bathroom and be sitting in the tub when you got there. We're going out the front door and he would beat you to that door. Time to go to bed and he would find his bed and be sleeping by the time you got there. I just can't express in words how special this dog was, not only to us but to all who knew him.

Back in October of 2012 Jack showed signs of not feeling well. Those eyes got sad, the first sign that something was wrong. Then he wouldn't eat. Well, now you know something is wrong. By the end of the first day without food and very little water, we called the Vet. We had him to the Vet within a half hour. We didn't want to leave him but they needed to run tests so reluctantly we went home without our Jack. The vet's office called telling us that they could not find the source of his illness and that we needed to take him somewhere with more advance equipment. We went to pick Jack up and to an animal hospital. It is now day 3 and with some fluids given thru the veins he is a little more perky. We get a temporary high thinking all will be well. But, the next day he is even worse. Now he doesn't want to move. Day 4 and we are back to the Vet and more tests, more blood work. We are starting to think he is suffering too much but if there is a solution??? What to do, what to do. Day 5 and now Jack will not eat, drink water or move. The inside of his ears are yellow. His body is shutting down. It's time to give Jack some relief and not let him suffer anymore. Yes, we made the decision to have him put to sleep.

Jack was only 6 years old when he died. Too young but cancer strikes animals too and that is what took our beloved Jack from us. He had Cancer!

It was awful for us but Jack is no longer suffering. He died in our arms very peacefully. That was October 23rd, 2012. I still cry tears of sorrow for our beloved Jack. How my heart hurts. But I believe our Jack is in Heaven and we will be reunited one day. We love you Jack. You are gone but you will never be forgotten!

Dog Memorial

Here are some beautiufl memorials to commemorate your loyal companion.

Dog Sympathy Cards

Yes, there are dog sympathy cards. Losing your beloved dog is hard. Let people know you understand with a card.

Tell me about your dog

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    • ShariBerry profile image
      Author

      Sharon Berry 4 years ago from Michigan

      @XpectMore: It took me a long time to write this tribute because every time I started the tears would fill my eyes and I couldn't see. It is still very difficult but I am blessed to have the memories.

    • ShariBerry profile image
      Author

      Sharon Berry 4 years ago from Michigan

      @XpectMore: Kassi is blessed to have you. I hope she brings you many years of joy.

    • XpectMore profile image

      XpectMore 4 years ago

      I just now read further. I am so sorry you lost your Jack. It is horrible to go through. They touch our hearts so much.

    • XpectMore profile image

      XpectMore 4 years ago

      Oh, I forgot to tell about my dog. Well, we are surrounded by many. I sit for dogs at my home. Kennel free and family style. But, I do have my own baby. Her name is Kassi Kaylor. I got her a little over 3 years ago. My 2 old boys (dogs) died one after the other. It was awful. I though the dogs I sit for would keep me busy and I would not need a dog. Well they did. It worked well. I did not need a dog. Until I got slow. I had to just have my own baby. There is just nothing like haveing your own dog. I looked long and hard for a dog. Then I saw Kassi. It is like she spoke to me. She is the most awesome little girl anyone could every have. I am so glad I have her.

    • XpectMore profile image

      XpectMore 4 years ago

      Jack is adorable. I can just tell that he is awesome and has a great personality. It is hard to chose the best dog from the litter. It really seems like you did. What a joy to have a dog like Jack and guess what? He is a full of joy to have you and the family.

    • ShariBerry profile image
      Author

      Sharon Berry 4 years ago from Michigan

      @Apps-for-iPad: Thank you for the lovely comment. Yes, Jack was something special and we really miss him.

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      Apps-for-iPad 4 years ago

      Your Jack is really adorable and seems to me quite dog as well.

    • ShariBerry profile image
      Author

      Sharon Berry 4 years ago from Michigan

      @lesliesinclair: It has been a few months since we lost Jack but I still tear up when I think of him. I'm really going to miss that dog. Thanks for a leaving me a comment.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      My favorite dog was an orphan, a mutt that was a good part Brittany Spaniel, and for over a year after she died I would be out in my kitchen garden, think I caught a glimpse of her out of the corner of my eye, and turn to greet her. Oh, the power of love.

    • ShariBerry profile image
      Author

      Sharon Berry 4 years ago from Michigan

      @anonymous: Thanks for leaving me a comment and telling me about your Jack. Yes, I am very greatful for all the wonderful memories and photo's we have of him.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Ah I'm sorry to hear that Jack is gone, but not forgotten. Nice idea to have a squidoo tribute to him. We had a dog called Jack as well, he got cancer too, we were all very sad, but we have some lovely memories as well.