Ralphie is the last man standing. When I got him, all my BFFs had dogs. Stacy had Claudius, named for the Roman emperor. He was a pit bull-beagle-cocker spaniel mix; funniest looking dog I ever saw, and one of the best dogs ever. Julia had Dusty, a big yellow Lab-collie-German shepherd mix. And Karen had Max and Matilda, a medium sized black labradoodle and a basset hound.
Claudius went first. I think he was 17. Then Dusty; he was 15. Matilda died not too long ago; she was 15. And just a couple of days ago, Max died. He was 17.
So my Ralphie is the last of the original group left.
Stacy has a new dog now; a basset hound named Beasley. Julia has a Heinz 57 named Hershey, although she’s black. Karen has a couple of cats; I don’t know if she’ll get another dog.
Ralph doesn’t get around too well any more; he has trouble getting up and down. Once he’s up, though, he’s fine. His appetite is still excellent, and he still doesn’t have accidents in the house, even though I’m gone all day at work. He still gets excited about his toys occasionally. So he’s doing pretty well for a big dog that’s as old as he is.
I know the inevitable is coming, though. And I dread it.