My dear buddy Barkley,

I am grateful that God blessed my life with you. You have been the perfect dog for me.

You were my companion when I lived in an empty house and had few close friends. You helped get me through lonely nights and tough times. It was comforting to have you sleep by my feet.

We had some great times.

I loved our walks in the pasture, when I could let you run off leash. You looked funny when we walked through the tall grass and you had to hop to see over it. Then there was the time when you started chasing a buck that we came upon in a clearing. I had two conflicting thoughts at that moment: amusement at seeing you chase after a big deer and horror as I wondered if you would get lost and I would never see you again.

Our camping trips were also fun. I would never have made that first trip out to Colorado without you. Having you by my side meant I wasn’t going alone. Thanks for helping me face my fears.

We had many walks. How many times did make that 3 mile loop while we were living in Storm Lake? It was a great place to walk since we were able to walk beside the lake.

We have had some scary moments too. The time you got hit by the SUV when we were visiting the farm. I am amazed that you survived that incident, but you pulled through. It was only by God’s grace that we were able to continue to be together.

I thought I was going to lose you when you ate the plastic backing from the welcome mat at the back door and had to have surgery. You were in so much pain and didn’t want to take your medicine. That was not much fun, but we got through it.

The transition from single life to married life has not been the easiest for you.

In our first years together you really did take on my personality and became as introverted as a dog can

be. Then you had to move to Minnesota and share the house with another dog. You and Lucia never became great friends, but you did learn to tolerate each other. Mostly, you just found a place to hide and tried to stay out of the way.

I am sorry that the role you had in my life diminished after I married Jenny, and further diminished after the kids were born. You ceased being my constant companion and became part of the background of my life. Even though your role got smaller, I am grateful that my kids were able to know you for a little while.

One thing I know beyond a shadow of a doubt: God used you to heal my heart. For that I will always be grateful. You accomplished your God-given task buddy, and I am not the same person I was because you came into my life.

I hate seeing you like this and I long for you to come and paw at my leg asking me to scratch your belly. I would love one last walk in the pasture and to see you run again.

I hope you know that I love you. You were the best dog I could have possibly hoped to have. Goodbye dear friend, I will miss you.

Your human buddy,






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