My beloved beagle, Oscar, is 15 years old today! I’ve had him since he was 8 weeks old. He came into my life 2 months after I bought my house, his arrival being the major reason why I bought the house in the first place. I figured a dog needs a yard.
It took me 2 weeks to name him, but his distinguishing characteristic of always getting into the garbage led me to his name (from Sesame Street, Oscar the grouch who lives in a garbage can).
The photo above was taken with hand-rolled film and developed in my own bathroom, which should explain the image quality.
Oscar saved my life once. Well, I cannot be sure he saved my life, but he certainly saved me from a terrible injury. He was about 3 years old at the time and was trained not to step off the sidewalk or outside the lines on a crosswalk. He’s always been good at that one. One day we were going across a crosswalk at an intersection when he suddenly darted out into oncoming traffic! I was totally shocked that he did this, the traffic was all slamming on their brakes and skidding to avoid him. He was across the first lane and, on the other end of the leash, I was pulled about 3 feet out into the lane of oncoming cars. It was then I felt this burning heat on my back leg and looked back to see a huge truck that was pretty much on top of me after barreling through the crosswalk we were on. I had just enough room to hit the hood of the truck with my fist when he stopped. If Oscar hadn’t pulled me out, I would have been hit by the truck. Oscar was in no danger of being hit by the truck since he was 6 feet in front of me going across the crosswalk, he did it all to save me.
Oscar has spent all of his days sleeping at my feet. Since I worked at home, we would always curl up under my desk or in his bed beside my desk and we would always go for a long walk at lunchtime. He loves camping and boating.
It was hard the year he was 10 years old and had to have knee surgery. So many people told me I shouldn’t spend $2000 to fix such an old dog. I had to spend 6 weeks doing physiotherapy and exercises with him 6 times a day so he would heal properly and not hurt the opposite knee compensating. He recovered from that with flying colours.
These flowers were sent to Oscar from my mother!
Last year I had to stop taking him boating with me since it is hard for him to maintain balance on the deck with his aging bones. I really miss my buddy on the boat.
He’s old, limpy, lumpy, has a white face, and it a little grouchy himself in his old age, but I love that guy. His nose hasn’t suffered in his aging, he can still smell a single cheerio hiding under a piece of furniture.
I worried about taking him on this trip and am still worried that he might not make it to the end. But I figured that he doesn’t want to stay home and wait for his last day to come. He probably wants to go and smell some national parks too. So this adventure of mine is also Oscar’s retirement.
I took this photo of Oscar on a red sand beach on Prince Edward Island. He loves the beach, and this was my present to him. That and an A&W baby burger, he always get a baby burger on his birthday.
Here are a few more of my favourite photos of Oscar: