Please excuse me this month for being so candid, but I recently got my heart broken by the loss of my dog, Howard. He was an Australian Shepherd/Blue Heeler mix and he’s been my buddy for nearly 13 years. He never really was a “truckin” dog, but he sure loved rides in my old Chevy. Howard was a very smart dog. He’d do tricks on-command and he knew the difference between “go get your ball” and “go get your toy” – his toy was a small stuffed animal that he had for over 10 years. He could tell by the sound of my keys if I was about to leave in the car, or if I had the keys to my old Chevy, which I affectionately called “his” truck. It was the only vehicle of mine that he got to ride in. In his younger days, he would roll over if you held up a treat and said, “Howard, what do you do?” But as he got older and less agile, he’d get halfway through the roll and then get stuck on his back and just wiggle around. It looked like he was having a seizure, so we changed his command to, “Howard, have a seizure!” It was hilarious. My wife Alicia took him to the veterinarian on December 1st because he wasn’t feeling well. They took an x-ray and found that he had a bleeding tumor in his stomach. Within 15 minutes, Howard was gone. I was loading in Union City, CA when I got that call, and let me tell you, it’s hard to keep your composure in front of your customers when you get hit with news like that. I know many drivers have a close bond with their pets at home or the critters that ride along in their trucks with them. I wrote this poem to my dog, Howard – the dog with unforgettable blue eyes. I’ll miss you, buddy.
By Trevor Hardwick
The snow is falling hard,
Out on the interstate tonight.
But I’ll be home tomorrow,
And I guess I’ll be alright.
I don’t know how I’ll take it,
When I walk through that front door.
And your big blue eyes & fuzzy face,
Won’t greet me anymore.
I wish that I had said goodbye,
When I left on this trip.
I should’ve said “be good my boy!”
And patted you on the hip.
How was I to know,
I’d never see your face again?
You’ve been with me for many years,
I miss my “man’s best friend”.
Remember how you used to lie,
Beneath the truck with me?
I’d be cussin’ bustin’ knuckles,
And you’d be sound asleep.
Remember how you used to hear,
My truck come up the street?
I’d pull into the drive,
And you’d be bouncin’ off your feet.
Oh, how I wish that you’d be there,
When I come home this week.
But when I think about you now,
My eyes begin to leak.
We put you down to sleep, my friend,
I know it don’t seem fair.
But I promise that we love you,
And we did it ‘cause we care.
We kept your favorite toy, you know,
The one you’ve had for years.
But all the rest, I’m sad to say,
Will slowly disappear.
I miss you very much, my boy,
And now that we’re apart.
If time can heal all wounds,
I hope it heals my broken heart.