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A Whippet West Side Story


She was a great beauty, born in the East. He was a tough guy from the West Side of the tracks.

Their paths crossed at a Versatility event where brains, speed, and beauty were all weighted equally. It was love at first sight and at every subsequent sighting.

Circumstances kept them apart, and they grew older, but never forgot their love.

She, the swift, agile beauty, eventually suffered a grievous injury that left her completely paralyzed. Subsequent surgery restored her ability to walk, run, and jump and she regained her ability to express her irrepressible joy in life.

He, the much-travelled and celebrated race dog, eventually suffered from a bout of tick-borne illness, recovering sufficiently well to enjoy a post-retirement career as a Veteran.

It was fate that brought the two lovers back together in their later years, allowing them to share a home together. It was easy to see that to him, she was still the great beauty she had been in her youth. And she still saw the handsome speedster she had always known. True love is like that.

Their greatest pleasure was to race in the meadow together, reaching respectable speeds for oldsters, frightening their people to death. He, the great race dog, would challenge her endlessly, but to his credit, he was always a gentleman and allowed her to win.

A few weeks ago, in May, on the clearest spring day, with golden sunshine, blue sky, and green grass, the lovers went for a run in the meadow. I saw him catch up to her and whisper in her ear. I was too far away to catch the words, or perhaps the breezes snatched them away just before they reached me. They raced and raced, and as usual, he let her win.

The next day, it became clear that she could not continue on and we lost our dear girl. There was much grieving in our home among people and dogs, alike. And in these weeks since her loss, I have often wondered what secret they shared that last day in the meadow. I have sat in the grasses and waited for the breezes to blow those lost words back to me, without success.

It has been not quite a month since she left and her presence in our home is still felt. You can almost see her out of the corner of your eye as you enter a room, hear her little yip at the door, feel her warmth on your feet in the middle of the night. It's like her spirit is still here...calling, calling, calling.

This week, we discovered that our old lad was grievously ill. Today was his vet appointment, a final journey.

As I held him close in his last moments, I asked, "Dear boy, what was it you whispered to your sweetheart that last day in the meadow?"

He replied, "I said to her, I'll race you to The Bridge. She is calling me now." And with one last lick to my nose, and his signature smile, he was gone.

Gentleman to the last, this West Coast racing champion let his Eastern sweetheart reach the finish line first, but only by a nose.


She was Amelia.
Bitterblue's Soul O' Flight JC, FCH, CRX-II
01/22/97 - 05/07/09
Sire: SBIS CH Cherche Wizard of the Wind (Jacob)
Dam: DC Shamasan Bitterblue Columbia CD, LCM (Columbia)

He was Bengal.
Wheatland Bengal WRCHX, SORC IV, SC, ROM
Lifetime #1 NOTRA and #1 NOTRA for 2000 & 2001
09/19/97 - 06/03/09
Sire: CH Wheatland Cab Calloway RCH (Squeaker)
Dam: Wheatland Frankie Sue SRCH2, SORC, ARM (Frankie Sue)

There's a place for us
Somewhere a place for us
Peace and quiet and open air
Wait for us
Somewhere

There's a place for us
A time and place for us
Hold my hand
And we're halfway there
Hold my hand
And I'll take you there
Somehow
Someday
Somewhere

Condolences to breeders and extended families of these two lovely animals. It has been our pleasure to share their lives these many years. We are grateful to have been so blessed.

~ Donna R. Miner


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