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In Memoriam

March 15, 2022

Goodbye, Austin

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Written by: Zach


Today I had to put my friend Austin down.  Although he was a million years old (probably 16+), could not hear anything, was suffering from bone cancer in his shoulder, could barely raise himself up to walk and had refused to eat anything for the previous 3 days, it was still very, very hard to let him go.

Austin came to live with me only 2 years ago.  His owner had been arrested by the Bear Valley PD and when the tow truck came to haul away his small pickup, they found Austin curled up in the small space behind the driver’s seat, lying on a pile of tools.  The BV PD called Marley’s Mutts to see if we could keep Austin, and Zach and I immediately agreed. A few days later, when Austin’s owner was released from jail, he said he did not want Austin back.  Because of Austin’s advanced age, Zach and I knew that it would be almost impossible to get him adopted, so I decided that he would be my dog.  It was an easy decision because Austin had obviously become very attached to me in just a few days.

I got attached to Austin very quickly, too.  Even though he was already very old (he had a grey beard, very badly stained teeth and could only hear sharp sounds like a loud clap), he was surprisingly healthy and strong.

I soon found out that we shared a love for baseball.  Although he obviously couldn’t bat very well (my attempt at a joke), he would chase a thrown baseball for hours on end and bring it back to me every time.  Zach and I were convinced that if we kept throwing the baseball, he would chase it until he collapsed from exhaustion.

Plus, Austin was a good swimmer.  First time Zach took him to Cub Lake he took one look at the ducks in the water and jumped right in.  Within seconds, he was 40 yards away from the shore.  Zach tried calling him (forgetting for a second that he was deaf), but that did no good.  He was afraid he was going to have to jump in to save him but, before too long, Austin swam to shore.

Austin was a loyal dog with no bad habits and only a couple of unique characteristics.  When I would take him on walks (which I wish I had done way more often), Austin insisted on holding his own lease in his mouth as he walked beside me.  Austin also loved to ride in trucks.  Every time he saw one, he expected someone to open a door so he could jump in.

The main thing I want people to know about Austin is how genuinely good he was.  I am very lucky to have known him.

The last 3 months of Austin’s life were very difficult for him as his body began to let him down and took away the things that made him happy, one-by-one.  Throughout all of his pain, he always tried to be a good dog.  For my part, I tried my best to give Austin the support and care he needed -I hope I did a good job.

Good bye, my friend.

Andrew Skow




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  1. Veca Daina

    It broke my heart to read your story. We have lost three pets, 2 dogs and 1 cat in a very short time. We feel your pain and know that what you gave Austin made his last days a lot more comfortable. Love is what he needed the most and you gave it to him. Bless you for caring.

  2. Andrea Welch

    You DID do a good job! You 2 were a great pair. Very nicely written. And hey, when it’s my time to go, can you guys put me on that hill with all the pups & my own rasta sign post??

  3. Candace Eastman

    So sorry for your loss. Austin had the best home at the end of his life.

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