the other me might even be better than this one

Goodbye, Ginny

April 21, 2024 — Gideon Mayhak


At 3:23 p.m. on Friday, April 19, we said goodbye to our beloved coonhound Ginny. It is an understatement to say it hit us hard. She was so much a part of our new life back in Wisconsin, living with us for over two and a half of the three years we've owned our house in Barron. The emotional weight has felt like moving. We left our home around 2:00 p.m. on Friday for the last time, and we came home to a new space. Where's our girl?

Consider this a eulogy for a dog.

It's been nice

Ginny was at many times infuriating.

I am very sensitive to sound; I don't like sounds that I can't turn off. She would bark and bark. Sometimes she was hungry; sometimes she was bored. She would get lonely. She was dutiful in letting us know when it was time to go outside.

She would steal things. She stole multiple muffins from off countertops and coffee tables. She stole pizza hot from the oven, and she stole our hearts.

Ginny was at most times adorable.

Many will say their dog is the best dog, but Ginny was the best dog. There are things I don't tend to like about dogs: they lick your face, they jump up on you, they might growl or snip at certain types of people or have problems with other dogs. Ginny did none of these. I could always put my face right in her face (which I love to do), and she wouldn't lick. I never had to worry about her jumping up on strangers, and she was incredibly calm and patient with children and other dogs. She was chill. She was snuggly. She was everything I want in a dog.

Hope you find your paradise

Sometime last fall Ginny developed a limp. She was an old gal when we first brought her home, so it was no surprise she was starting to struggle with arthritis. Between some pain relief medicine and light therapy, she improved. She was definitely less comfortable, and her back-right leg never fully returned to its upright, locked position.

At the start of this year, she began to have different kinds of trouble. She would drink incredible amounts of water and need to go outside every 20 minutes. She would wake up at five in the morning wanting to eat. Some bloodwork showed some elevated liver enzyme numbers and we put her on a supplement. She didn't improve.

We didn't want to be the types of people who prop up a dog after it has no quality of life left just so we didn't have to say goodbye. We closely monitored her wellness and agonized over what we should do. We set a date. We took her on a farewell tour to see friends and family. We said goodbye.

Will we ever meet again?

My whole body aches from these past couple days. I didn't know it would be so hard. Our showerhead makes some squeaks and whistles that sound like Gin. I have to remind myself that she's not there. But she is here.

I put together a playlist that I hope you'll join me in listening to. It's not just about Ginny; it's about life and loss. Queue it up on your music service of choice, or buy all the relevant CDs because they're great.

  1. "Sense of Doubt" from David Bowie's "Heroes"
  2. "And She Was" from Talking Heads' Little Creatures
  3. "A Place to Call Home - Melodies of Life" from Distant Worlds II
  4. "What Sarah Said" from Death Cab for Cutie's Plans
  5. "One Fine Day" from David Byrne and Brian Eno's Everything That Happens Will Happen Today
  6. "Someone Great" from LCD Soundsystem's Sound of Silver
  7. "Goodbye Stranger" from Supertramp's Breakfast in America
  8. "Loss of Life" from MGMT's Loss of Life
  9. "End of the Line" from Traveling Wilburys' Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1
  10. "Moss Garden" from David Bowie's "Heroes"

G'night, Ginny.

"The donkey said to Balaam, 'Am I not your donkey, on which you have ridden all your life long until today? Was I ever in the habit of doing so to you?'

"He said, 'No.'"

Numbers 22:30, WEB

Tags: ginny, meet-the-mayhaks, music