My first "selfie". It was to show how happy I was with Artie

My first “selfie”, December, 2004. It was to show how happy I was with Artie

Artie, the One Dog Party. The perfect description of this Artie.

I found Artie on the internet, I admit it was love at first sight. I had wanted a scottie since  my fourth grade report on FDR’s scottish terrier Fala. I had been on the Scottie Rescue list for a couple of years with no luck, so in 2004 I decided to try to expand my search. I found him from a Texas breeder who showed scottish terriers.  Artie, real name Double D Sir William, didn’t make the show dog cut due to a very skittish personality.

ArtieMy timing couldn’t have been worse; it was a terrible time to think of another dog. We already had one dog, she was a great dog and didn’t seem to be pining for company.

Not only that, we were going  through a lot with our family in 2004. My husband was traveling back and forth to his parents house every weekend, a three hour trip each way every weekend when I sprung, “I have found the perfect dog!” on him.

I remember his face when I tried to explain how much I already loved this “Artie” dog.  I could see he was tallying it up yet as yet another thing to do when he was beyond overloaded with family, job, house, travel, dog…now another dog?! We talked it over (through many tears on my part) and we agreed the time wasn’t right for another dog. But I continued to look at pictures of Artie and mope around about not having him. What really happened was that Dan contacted the owners in Texas and surprised me with Artie for my birthday.

Happy Birthday ArtieI can’t tell you how surprised I was, how happy I was, and now when I think of it, that I don’t deserve such a wonderful husband. Artie was the best birthday present. Ever. Then I lost Artie. Twice.

The first time was on the very first night we had him. He took off down the street when we let him out. Luckily two people saw him bolt into a neighbor’s yard, but it still took an hour of searching a dark yard in the middle of the night to find a little black dog who either didn’t know his name or his new owners.

The second time I lost him was two days after the first. I had taken him to the beach to experience the ocean for the first time. He was walking on the jetty when suddenly he disappeared between the rocks. I ran up to get him and I just couldn’t find him! It took another ten minutes of searching between every crevice in the jetty to finally pull him out. Honestly, I had my doubts that the dog would last a week.

Artie settled in

Artie settled in

He survived the first week without getting lost again. Then our first dog died unexpectedly which made him more skittish and I remember wondering how on earth this dog rationalized his new home? Either he was getting lost or the established pet died off when he showed up. Thankfully, he settled in, became my very favorite and the darling of my eyes.

photo 1


He grew less skittish over time, and in looking over  all my photos, I see that Artie is everywhere. Vacations, ski trips, hikes, and bike rides.

photo 4

You see I had the above image of me on my bike with Artie in the basket. Yes, that’s what I saw in my mind and expected all sorts of wolf whistles when we hit the pavement. Sadly, all I got was the theme song of “Wicked witch of the West” when people saw Artie in the milk crate on the back of the bike.

This is what Artie looks like on the back of a bike

This is what Artie looks like on the back of a bike

We got a second terrier named Honey about five years ago to help bring Artie out of his shell. She quickly became alpha, a complete attention hound, which endeared Artie all the more to me. Despite their many differences, they seem good for each other.

Dogs in the window

Dogs in the window

Dogs with haircuts

Dogs with haircuts

Dogs lying down...okay, you get it.

Dogs lying down…okay, you get it.

We did a lot with the two terriers as well.

Hiking/camping in Maine

Hiking/camping in Maine

But there’s Artie, always my darling.

418669_4347864421809_69212031_nArtie died today. He was ten, not very old for a terrier but he had cancer and it was at the point that he was in pain all the time.

The hardest part about having a dog is that you outlive them. It’s just a harsh fact goes along with the territory. You have to say good bye in the saddest way, even when you think you know how much it will hurt, nothing really prepares you.

He was a great little dog and I’m grateful that he was able to share a good life with us.



About EF Sweetman

bees, baseball, beverly, ma, culture, manners, society, writing
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5 Responses to Artie

  1. chlost says:

    Oh, I am so sorry. When our favorite cat, Ziggy died, I was in tears for a week. Then it got a little better, but it was a long time. My husband hasn’t been willing to get another cat, because it can never live up to Ziggy. We have a Miniature Schnauzer now. Not a cat, but he’s a pretty good substitute. It is hard to know that we will at some point have to deal with his loss as well.
    Hugs to you.

    • EF Sweetman says:

      Thank you so much chlost, I really appreciate your kind thoughts. It’s a sad part of owning a dog or a cat, I guess it’s because we love them so much that it makes it so sad to say goodbye. Ziggy sounds like he was a great cat-I love the name. Take care and thanks again.

  2. Bonnie says:

    Thank you for sharing this wonderful tale Liz. I am so sorry for your loss, Artie was a terrific doggie It is never fair when we lose these little bundles of love who have enriched our lives with their passion, loyalty and humor. I shed some tears for Artie today.
    (former Mom of kitties: Maxi an Cleo, now happily sharing life with golden Darcy and tabbies Felix and Oscar)

  3. Pingback: Well This is Interesting. | Of bees, baseball, bicycles… and other things

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