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Louie

Louie was Barbara Jean’s very first dog! An absolutely beautiful White German Shepherd Dog that her parents gave her on her third birthday. Not many people recall birthdays that young but Barbara Jean does.

louie

This adorable solid white puppy was wearing a giant royal blue ribbon/bow around his neck with a matching royal blue collar and leash. He had one ear standing up and one ear flopped down still and sat lazily on his but with his legs spread eagle. He was her new best friend. When her parents asked her what she wanted to name him, she immediately responded with “Louie!” They looked surprised (expecting something more like Snowball or Fluffy) and repeated the name back to her, to which Barbara Jean said “YES”, and spelled it out… “L-O-U-I-E!!!”  

As an only child, Barbara Jean didn’t have siblings to hang around and bond with so Louie became her family instantaneously. They were together twenty four seven and somehow, even at such a young age, they both had an incredibly respectful and trusting relationship with each other. She loved the caretaking chores of feeding, walking, cleaning up after him, playing games and training more than your average kid to say the least. She embraced it and found joy and passion in being with him as much as possible.  

Louie was always there for her and even slept in bed with Barbara Jean overnight. This was the game changer right there because as Barbara Jean’s parents were going through a separation and would often be yelling in the next room over, Louie was there to comfort her. He would lick the tears off her face as she cried herself to sleep and was her full body hug pillow throughout the night. This puppy never left her side, regardless of the circumstances and truly set the example of what a mans/kids best friend looks like. It was this devotion, loyalty and unconditional love that sealed the deal and paved the pathway for Barbara Jean’s continuous commitment of service giving back to these four legged savors of the world. 

Unfortunately, some years later Barbara Jean’s family was moving and not able to take Louie with them. They ended up giving him to their landlord who they were very close friends with which would allow them to stay in contact and visit him frequently. And that they did. Barbara Jean dragged her parents to visit Louie every chance she got. 

After a few moves, Barbara Jean was able to convince her mom to let her have Louie come back and sleep over for the weekend. As her mom was getting her shoes on, Barbara Jean headed outside with Louie on leash into the driveway where he saw a squirrel and took off. With the leash wrapped around her wrist, she went down and Louie wasn’t stopping. He continued to chase whatever it was and dragged Barbara Jean 100+ yards down the road until her hand finally unraveled and she was freed from the leash. Louie continued to run and she got up screaming with clothes torn and blood gushing as she ran back home to her mom who was running down the road with one shoe on. They ended up in the ER with many many hours of scraping pebbles out of Barbara Jean’s skull and countless stitches to sew up her head and eye. Needless to say, Barbara Jean has never wrapped her hand in the loop of a dog’s leash ever again.

Although Louie had zero ill intentions with his behavior, Barbara Jean’s Dad insisted that he promptly go back to the landlord’s house after that and we went back to visiting him in his home rather than him coming to ours. He got to live out his life with the wonderful landlord couple who went hiking and boating every weekend. Louie lived a great life and eventually passed away peacefully at the age of 12 years old. As Barbara Jean’s very first dog, he truly left the very first paw prints on her heart.