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My Best Friend Shelby

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posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 01:40 PM
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It is with great sadness that I have to report Shelby, the super-Lab, passed on today. Some of you have inquired periodically as to her health, and as some may recall I posted about my concern for her in recent weeks. Her health had been progressively failing her, and her quality of life had all but come to an end.

I've raised and trained many hunting Labradors over the decades, and by far Shelby was the very best of all of them. She had the eyes of an eagle, the nose of a bloodhound and the heart of an angel forged in solid gold.

The stories I could tell of her are endless. Her enthusiasm and tenacity knew no bounds. When all the other field dogs had long since run out of gass and been crated up, Shelby was still out there pushing through the brush and tangle. She never lost a bird. It probably bears repeating...she never lost a single bird! To anyone who knows about bird hunting, this says it all! Her pride and happiness was exceeded only by her kindness and love.

She was my best friend and one of the best dogs anyone could ever ask for. She never complained, not even once, in all her 14 years. She always had a wagging tail, and those beautiful 'happy ears' for everyone and everything. Even in her final minutes she managed to give me a little tail wag. She went to sleep, one last time, right here at home and in my arms, a place where she always loved and where she forever belongs.

A better dog a man simply could not ask for. I love her dearly with all my heart and will miss her eternally.

My heart is broken with her loss.

Shelby, you were my very best friend!

RIP - Shelby Belle Dakota...(her AKC registered name)
2004-2018

"Bird Down!! Fetch 'em up, Shelby...Fetch 'em up, girl!"


edit on 6/27/2018 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 01:53 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I feel how weak and fruitless must be any words of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming.

I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost...


Rest in peace Shelby.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 01:55 PM
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I am so sorry to hear about your best friend Shelby. Sounds like she had a life other dogs can only dream of. I have a special place in my heart for labs, and I swear our lab Finn is reincarnated from our previous lab Jack.

We only get them for a short time but their memories last us a lifetime.

Take care.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 02:07 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I'm sorry for your loss, fcd. As I have three furry family members now and have had others in the past, I understand your loss.

I hope all the happy memories you've forged together carry you for a long time. And the thought that she had the happiest life she could have had with you.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 02:09 PM
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May she be chasing sticks forever.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 02:10 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I'm sorry to hear this.

My dog--more appropriately, my 14-year-old son's dog, considering his bond with her--is in her last days as well because of melanoma of the jaw. She's still doing okay at the moment, but I think that it's going to be a very fast decline, and I'm afraid that it's already started with her beginning to pee inside the house intermittently.

I will be sad for myself, for sure, but I can't handle the thought of watching my son hurt as much as he's going to when it comes time to put her down. He has Asperger's and doesn't hug anyone except his 4-year-old sister and that dog, so my wife and I won't even be able to comfort or console him.

It's going to be tough, and I remember when my lab died when I was 16--it was heartbreaking.

You have my best wishes, sir.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 02:35 PM
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originally posted by: SlapMonkey
a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I'm sorry to hear this.

My dog--more appropriately, my 14-year-old son's dog, considering his bond with her--is in her last days as well because of melanoma of the jaw. She's still doing okay at the moment, but I think that it's going to be a very fast decline, and I'm afraid that it's already started with her beginning to pee inside the house intermittently.

I will be sad for myself, for sure, but I can't handle the thought of watching my son hurt as much as he's going to when it comes time to put her down. He has Asperger's and doesn't hug anyone except his 4-year-old sister and that dog, so my wife and I won't even be able to comfort or console him.

It's going to be tough, and I remember when my lab died when I was 16--it was heartbreaking.

You have my best wishes, sir.



Get another dog right now, to help with it. That is terrible to hear.

My oldest dog of 14, my good friend, became almost paralyzed a few years back so he went through spine surgery. He was ok for a couple of years but now he is starting to lose control and is starting to urinate around the house.

The two 2 years olds that we now also have are here for him, to help him out and lick him and keep him active, as much as they are for everyone else to help with the eventual loss.

Best wishes to both of you.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 02:36 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

aww, I'm truly sorry for your loss, fcd.
She'll forever be in your heart.
RIP Shelby



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 02:53 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I'm sorry to hear that.

Our very best friends leave a hole that's as painful as it is hard to fill, when they leave.

Shelby'll be waiting for you, and it'll be as though no time at all has passed, and she'll have the bird.

Sorry, man.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 03:05 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

That sucks man, sorry to hear that.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 03:09 PM
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a reply to: Kharron

I didn't mean to turn any comments on me and away from FCD, but thanks for the good wishes. We do have two other dogs.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 03:23 PM
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originally posted by: SlapMonkey
a reply to: Kharron

I didn't mean to turn any comments on me and away from FCD, but thanks for the good wishes. We do have two other dogs.



Nor did I, but your post struck a chord.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 04:10 PM
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a reply to: Kharron

I didn't take it that way (both Kharron and Slap).

We also have two other dogs. The first one (the ACD) we got to keep Shelby company and be her companion, and boy were they ever! They were practically inseparable. He loved her probably almost as much as I did. He had way too much excess energy for her so we got another pup (the Aussie Shepard) to keep up with him, which worked out great.

Sure, they help cushion the loss some, but Shelby was my champ and my superstar. For her first year she spent practically every minute (except work) by my side...she went everywhere with me, she was almost glued to me.

When I went to look at the litter she was from I had sworn to the wife (and myself) I wouldn't get a (another) female. This, for a whole variety of reasons, not the least of which they just absolutely melt your heart. Anyway, I show up and I'm looking over the dogs; it was a litter of 9 pups. One of them is a GIANT compared to the others, fully 3+" taller. This dog see's me and it's instantly glued to me, it just would not leave me alone. At one point I asked the breeder to remove this dog so I could look at the rest of them. Seven others were solid Labs with excellent features, all of them champs and there was one runt (whom I'm sure made someone a great dog too). This other dog though, the one I'd had removed (a female) was like Conan the Barbarian compared to Pee Wee Herman. She had a build like I'd never seen before! And when they let her go, she came right back over and would NOT leave me alone. If that little monster-pup could have spoken she would have screamed "I'M GOIN' HOME WITH THIS GUY!! NO IF'S, AND'S OR BUT'S!!. I had bred, raised and professionally trained Labs for years, and this is something you don't ignore.

She was clearly the pick of the litter hands-down. She made the decision, not me.

When I put her in the truck she came over and sat up on the seat right next to me, so close I had to put my arm around her just so it wasn't on top of her. She never whimpered, not once. ALL pups whimper when the sudden realization they've been removed from Mama and brethren...ALL of them! But not this one! Nope, she made her choice and she never looked back for even one instant. No separation anxiety, nothing. She was that way her whole life. Never complained once.

And that's how she rolled her entire life. My wife called her my 'other wife' for a time, but she eventually melted her heart into a puddle.

And smart? Oh my gawd, I've never raised a dog so smart. By 4 months she was doing double water retrieves, by 5 months she was doing selective blind retrieves (throw out 3 dummies and tell her which one to bring back first...WITH hand signals!!) I kid you not! Never saw another dog do that, not at that age! She was hunting actual birds by 6.5 months...and training other dogs by 1 year. This was not your average Lab by a long, long, shot! By 1 year she was cross-trained in both waterfowl and upland hunting. Her eyes, nose and ears were spectacular (you hardly ever see eyes and ears both be that good, it's usually one or the other). She could find stuff I absolutely swore no dog on Earth would find. She wasn't afraid of anything, nothing scared her, and she was a bruiser of a dog too. She spent much of her adult life at about 115 lbs. which is an absolute GIANT of a Labrador, and just off the charts for a female. And she was tough as nails too. An ordinary field dog might make a couple hours in corn stalks, but she could go all day in that stuff. Everybody else would be cut to ribbons and exhausted. Shelby would be skinned up, but you couldn't drag that dog back into the truck, she'd have none of it! There were birds in there, and she was goin' back in until there weren't any left. Period.

She was really sumthin'. One of those really, really, rare ones you hardly ever come across.

And even after all that, I'd get her home and people would think she was the biggest lovable "lap-dog" they ever saw. She didn't have a mean or aggressive bone in her body. She'd come in the house and go jump right in my wife's lap like "Missed you Mom, love you to death...can I have a belly rub?"...all 115 lbs of her.

I could go on for weeks, or even months, singing Shelby's virtues.

Saying goodbye to her was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do in my entire life.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 06:05 PM
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I am so very sorry for your loss! I have lost many beloved pets through the years and know how difficult this is for you.



edit on 27-6-2018 by Night Star because: (no reason given)

edit on 27-6-2018 by Night Star because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 09:00 PM
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a reply to: Night Star

"Rainbow Bridge"...I think Shelly might like that, but maybe not.

In her world, it was like "Bridge over the River Kwai"

To see her in the field, she was a warrior; she never looked back.

I can't count the number of times a Rooster Pheasant tried to "spur" her in the neck. She'd drop the bird and look at it like ..." Run, BITCH...and I will hunt you down...your game...in MY world!!"

She was an AMAZING girl!!

No bird ever got away, she never lost a bird.

I watched birds just give up when she'd eye-fake them.

Put two Canadian Geese down in the water one time in Utah. Birds both bounced off the ice. Shelby had them both marked when the guns went off...and before we could stop her she smashed through the ice and was swimming toward both. The ice was probably 1/2" thick, and she was smashing it with her feet to make way. Her first goose beat her all the way back to the boat, just beat the snot out of her! We had a ramp on the boat she could get out of the water on. She didn't use it; she went back for the 2nd one. The water was black and ice cold, but that was Shelby.

The stories I could tell of this wonderful girl are amazing.

I will miss her. Everyone will.



posted on Jun, 27 2018 @ 11:27 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

She was quite the Warrior! She has new hunting grounds now and will wait for the day where you will be reunited.




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