This is a testimonial to man’s best friend. More than my best friend, my dog Jack, was my champion.
First, let me describe him to you. Johann vom Jagermeister, Jack, was just a baby at 6 and 1/2 weeks when he came to my home.His father Gustl Schwarzen Drachen was an international champion. His blood was of the purest East German bloodlines from the best bred German Shepherds the world over. He was stunning. His ears stood straight and erect at just weeks old, and his coat was solid ebony. He reminded me of a tiny Black bear cub. Precious and darling. But soon to grow into a fierce and formidable canine.
We lived on 3 acres, with a huge grassy yard front and back. The rear of the property was lined deep with oak trees. Over time, I transformed this plot of land into a small “gentlemans farm”. We grew a huge organic garden, with everything from artichokes, thyme, basil, mint and rosemary, to several varients of tomato, eggplant and pepper. We had corn, squash of all shapes and colors and strawberries. Lettuces, arugula, chard and collards. Rabbits shared the garden with us and often the tiny new spring bunnies would emerge to nibble. I didn’t mind. We had more than enough to share. And it was fun watching them as I weeded, poking their little noses out around the stalks of corn or the vining curcubits.
Jack commanded this parcel standing only 8 inches high. His ears pricked straight up as he would stand guard, at our circular drive, alerting when a visitor pulled in. As time went on, the neighbors, the mailman, the landscapers and tons of friends and family all new and loved Jack and watched as he grew bigger and stronger each passing day. Restaurant owners personally dropped off prime rib for him.
We decided to dig two ponds. We grew ginger and purple ornamental grasses and gorgeous lillies at the edges and had tiny mallard ducklings that we raised by hand with Jack as their sentient. Giant Koi swam and delighted us all. Jack grew and 4 children, as they grew as well, learned the circle of life as it came and went season after season on our mini farmette in the New Jersey countryside.
Within a year, the tiny 8 inch pup was a big, black wolf that had a zest for life and a presence that would not be ignored. He reigned supreme like a king over this land and ever so gently allowed children, ducklings and tiny yellow baby chicks to climb upon his back. As the chicks grew into hens that provided us with fresh eggs, their friendship endured. Lying prone as he sunned himself, sprawled out upon pine needles at the properties edge, they would snuggle with him. It was a sight to be seen. I don’t believe a dog, yet a German Shepherd would allow chickens to roost on their backs without consuming them for lunch. But Jack did.
Jack was a very powerful dog. He weighed in at 130 pounds and his stamina and strength would wear a grown man out. Bred from champions, he wore the crest of blue bloods. Never have I heard of a dog being referred to as a gentleman, but Jack was. He was a polite dog. He knew precisely what to say and when to say it. And no one ever took Jack for granted. When you met him, he garnered respect. He had rules. And under no uncertain terms was anyone going to break them. He was a mans mans dog owned by me, a girl. And so he tendered himself, for me. Gently nudging me for his attention. Cuddling me and licking away my tears. following closely at my heel wherever I went. Proudly he walked by my side. Always assuring me that I was safe under his dominion. My whispers could command him and he would always obey. His love and his loyalty were unquestionable.
Fearless and evoking fear in others, he was a big mush. His biggest joy was to play endlessly. Whether it be a football, a stick, a huge fallen log deep in snow covered woods or a coconut in south Florida, Jack would catch it in midair and return again and again for more. If you were to toss a pebble into a pathway filled with a million pea stones, Jack would find just that pebble and return it to you. His instincts, his play drive, his obedience, his intelligence, his charm and his strength were unlike any other dog I have ever known.
I called him Jack. Not Prince or Rex or anything ostentatious. Just Jack. My dog Jack. He was a part of me and will always be a part of me until the day I die. Losing him has shown me the importance of friendship and love. A love so deep and a bond so thick that even death will not, cannot break it. That through his passing, my grief will reanimate his life in each moment, in each sunrise, with each season. I hear him in the wind, I feel his warmth in the cold. I will know he is beside me as my protector and my companion, my champion, my friend.
Words can never convey the deep emotion that was felt between he and I. No one can imagine a love like this between a girl and her dog. His beauty and grace cannot be painted nor sketched. No pen or brush are able to bring his true spirit to light. It is only feIt in my heart where his love lies and will remain always. Though I try to tell his story, I cannot accurately do it. You would have to know Jack for the true story to be told. And one day, should I happen to find a new pup only 8 inches high at my doorstep, he or she will be directly descended from this great animal, this king of dogs. My dog Jack. God rest in Peace my best friend. I love you and miss you most dearly.