July 28, 1997 (which was also a Monday) was the day I brought home Euckie the Wonder Dog. I had found her, and she selected me on the Saturday, when I went to Anti-Cruelty Society. I had been going on Saturdays for a number of weeks. Every time I went, it seemed that the dogs had already been ‘reserved’ or adopted by someone else.
That weekend, a friend from downstate was coming up to visit me. Rebecca (or Reb) was actually from my hometown, Bumblefuck. But that’s not how & where we became friends. She was a number of years behind me in school. Her older sister was a freshman when I was a Senior. But she worked at the hospital that I worked at—my first CME job. She worked in PR. Different things at work had us crossing paths, and we became friends.
Anyway, Reb came up to visit. She went with me early on Saturday morning to Anti-Cruelty. We took then otherly named Euckie out to the play area. She was very timid, but longing for affection. She had the longest tongue. Reb commented, “Lesbians would love her.” We seemed to be compatible. I went to the volunteer/staff person. Told her I wanted this dog. IN all of the previous times I’d been there, there was not mention of ‘necessary’ items for adoption, one of which was a copy of one’s condo’s by-laws providing evidence that one’s building allows dogs. Also, they wouldn’t ‘hold’ her while I went back to get a copy of my building’s by-laws. Reb said she would stay with the dog while I went back. I do so. I return. There’s a different volunteer to complete the paper work this time. She NEVER asked for the freaking by-laws! Had Reb not been with me, I likely would have lost the chance to get Euckie. Reb helped me come up with her name. As I used to be a florist, I determined that my dogs would always be named after plants. Now I worked in healthcare. The dog was part Australian Shepherd. Eucalyptus is a plant with healing properties, native to Australia. So, Eucalyptus it would be, but shortened to Euckie.
I have been watching that new dog show on CBS about Dogs and their human companions. It's very bittersweet for me to watch. Euckie was very possessive of me. She did not like sharing me or my attention with others, especially other dogs. While we would not have gotten far in that contest, she was “America’s Greatest Dog” in my book and always will be. I was recently talking with another dog person, who was talking about one of his 3 dogs. He said, “He’s the one in a lifetime—you know, that perfect dog, who just ‘fits’ with you. You know that you’ll not ever have another dog like this—this perfect.” Yes, I did know. I had my ‘dog of a lifetime’. She was the best. She was Euckie. She was my protector and companion for almost 11 years. Happy Anniversary, Euckie.