A couple of weeks ago I had to say "Goodby" to an old dog. Casey was my first Airedale, and 100% hunting dog. Over his lifetime he looked up a tree at many a bear, bobcat, and cougar; as well as lesser game. In his last couple of years he began to fail badly. I think it was his heart that finally gave out. One evening he was fine, and the next morning he was near death. The stout heart that had carried him over many a mountain had given out. He was about 3 weeks short of 13 years old.
Smoky was a little Appaloosa that I purchased from a friend when he was about 11 years old. For a small horse, he was a walkin’ son of a gun, and he carried me over many a mountain trail for the next 10 years. When it became obvious that the longer trips with bigger and younger horses were beginning to tell on him, I let him go to a good home were he was well cared for through his retirement years. I learned yesterday that the old pony had passed on. I was not informed immediately, and as near as I can tell he must have died at very nearly the same time that Casey did. Smoky must have been nearly 30 years old.
Will Rogers is credited with once saying that "If dogs don’t go to heaven, I want to go where they go". I would like to say the same about good horses. It would please me to think that maybe a good dog and a good horse are keeping each other company somewhere while they wait for me. I hope so anyway.