September 2 1984 —- April 25 2000

Grey Poodle

When we first saw him in a pet store in Alabama we fell in love with

the wee little furry guy.

All black and curly with a gray shaved tiny face. For you see gray poodles

are black when born. Then later as they lose their baby fur they turn gray.

He was a Pedigree Pup but his mother hadn’t been registered.

Papers for him were not available. It didn’t matter to us we still wanted

this little puppy. When old enough to take him home we decided to

name him Sterling Silver. From the very first he was ” our little buddy”.

When he arrived home there was a Big gray and white cat to greet him.

Not always a friendly feline but after a few swats on the nose the little

guy learned quickly to stay out of Mr. Cat’s territory.

After a time they both agreed to ignore each other. When Sterling moved to

Indiana one cold snowy winter. It was quite a change from living in the

sunny south but he adjusted quickly.

He loved to romp and play in the snow and then come into the house all

covered with snow flakes and give a big hearty shake.

On warm summer days he loved to ride in a bicycle basket with his

mistress doing the pedaling. He would sit for hours never seeming to tire of

letting the wind blow his long pretty gray ears.

He was a lovable pup always friendly and energetic.

He enjoyed pulling on an old sock with a knot tied in one end.

His favorite toy in his younger days was a rubber doggie hamburger

with a squeaker. His first endeavor when getting a new hamburger was

to work feverishly and chew away until he got the squeaker to drop out.

Then he was happy and ready for someone to toss it so he could

retrieve it quickly. He was quite a licker and kisser too always

showing his affection. When showing off he would walk on his hind legs

expecting a much anticipated treat.

He loved doggie treats especially when coming in from outside.

He always expected one to be waiting for him to gobble up.

These treats he never tired of all through his long life ( milk bones were

his favorites). Rawhide Chews and bones were Special treats he

enjoyed from time to time. They were his prize possessions and he guarded

them with an eagle eye. He chewed them until they were wet limp and soggy.

Only once did he chew up something that he shouldn’t have.

It was a shoe from a new pair belonging to his mistress. He got into a bit of

trouble over that and never let it happen again.

When he was around eight years old he had to learn a new set of give

and take rules. Up till that time he was ” the boss ” of his domain.

At this time another dog came to live at his house. It was suppose to be a

temporary arrangement but it turned out to be permanent. .

The new intruder in fact was another poodle a little black male named

Webster Beethoven. Now Webster was rather a feisty barking growling

little guy who kinda pushed his way into Sterling’s quiet low-keyed life style.

At first there were some differences but little by little Sterling showed Webster

the ropes and the House Rules.

The two became friends companions and best buddies.

Which is rather unusual for two male dogs.

Soon you never saw one without the other close by. They both loved to ride

in the car and traveled well. Sterling loved to go camping and was a great camper.

He had to teach the rules to the new guy. For Webster was a whiner and had

a tendency to run or wander off in any direction.

Sterling set a good example as a leader and Webster became the follower.

Sterling liked to be out – of – doors and would lie contented while swinging

with his mistress in the yard swing. Or he would just lie in the sun as if he

were sun bathing.. Webster was always on the move first wanting in

then out never content to just be at your side.

Many vacations were enjoyed with both dogs in tow North South

East and West. Both traveled well and slept most of the time only wanting

out when the car stopped for gas food or motels at night.

Two things Sterling did not like was water (except for drinking).

In forms of baths swimming or rain these were not his cup of tea.

And the UPS Truck once a driver while delivering a package swung at

him with a clipboard. Sterling never forgot this encounter.

Guess sometimes even Mr. lovable held a grudge.

A few times when their masters went away for a longer period of time

and the little guys couldn’t go they went excitedly to the boarding kennels.

While there they were pampered and loved. They didn’t mind going and

they stayed in one cage with their favorite rugs and each other.

At night for many years Sterling slept on his master’s bed with them

lying close up against one or the other.

When ever anyone was lying down he was always close by your side

or in the crook of your leg. In later years he made room for his buddy

he went to the foot of the bed lying on his back and making

room for Webster. Only recently were they moved to their own

room (the sewing and computer room).

Where they had their own pillows to sleep on. I ask you

How many dogs have their own room?

Many evenings they happily shared popcorn with their masters.

One of their very very Special Treats. They both loved it dearly and

relished it happily until the last kernel was gone.

After being together for eight happy years the dreaded day of

separation finally came. For a few weeks up to that time Sterling’s health

rapidly began to fail. So unlike himself he became cross snapping and

growling at his devoted masters and even his buddy Webster.

It became harder and more difficult for him to get around.

He began to yelp from time to time seemingly in pain. and could

no longer hold his head up straight. The end of a precious pet’s faithful

devotion came to a close on a beautiful spring day in late April.

Now the final chapter is being written. Webster now seventeen Years old

(one year older than Sterling) is sad and lost without his faithful friend.

He walks around looking bewildered and confused and crying when

left by himself. Webster has acquired a new personality he wants to be

held and petted. But he spends many hours just lying quietly on his pillow.

In the end Webster was trained well by his mentor,and “best buddy,” Sterling.

Thank You Sterling for the many years of companionship devotion

and love we shared. We will treasure the fond memories you leave with us.

You are sadly missed and will always be remembered

by Ron Laura & Webster.

Penned with love and tears.

by – Laura B. Shaw