Thursday, January 10, 2008


Sometimes he was Joey, sometimes he was just Jo. He was Freak Jo, Freak Show, Little Freaky Man, and Little Buddy Jo, but he was not ever your average Jo! (There was a short period of time, after we had watched the entire Godfather series, that he was "Joey Zaza" after one of the movie characters. He had a sidekick, our other dog, who was Ziggy the Lips. They were a great mafia team, those two. He was the brains, she was the brawn.)Sometimes, I swear, he thought his name was, "Joey, SHUT UP!"
He was smart as a whip, but never quite got the idea that we hated it when he wouldn't stop yapping when the mailman walked by the front door.
He loved to lick the ice cream bowls after we were done - his only "people food" treat that he got on a consistent basis. And, boy, he would sure let us know it if we forgot to let him lick! It's amazing how, through body language and eye contact a dog can let you know that "Hey, Mom, I want to lick that bowl...that one right there. Yes, that one."
His favorite places to be were either tucked right next to a leg if we were sitting, making sure to slip into the warm spot if we happened to get up, or on the back of the sofa. If one of us had a blanket, he wanted to curl up under it - that was like Doggie Disneyworld!
He was constantly underfoot in the kitchen, sure that we were going to drop something wonderful for him, and when we undressed for a shower, he immediately would curl up on the clothes on the floor.
He was 13-years-old and needed a bit of encouragement to make it up onto the bed in our room. "C'mon, Jo! You can do it! C'mon, ya freak!"
When he was younger, and we took him everywhere with us, he had a koala toy that clipped onto the car visor and we'd play fetch in the car. (Hey, it's really easy to exercise a 6-pound dog!) For years after that koala disappeared, we could still say, "Joey, where's the koala?" and he'd look up at the visor! If he was nosing around under the edge of the sofa or sitting, staring and growling, at the crack in the cusions, you could place a bet that there was a bit of food, a ball, or something in there that he wanted. Every time.
He was mostly unkempt because he HATED going to the groomer and I don't give really great haircuts. His breath was pretty bad because he HATED going to the vet and we worried that having his teeth cleaned would be too much for him. I sometimes joked that he was so inbred that he was his own uncle, and he was plagued with seizures throughout his life. He stood up on his front legs to pee, just like a circus dog. Cute, but a habit that caused him to oftentimes pee directly up his chest...not so cute.
But he was a faithful friend, always freakishly happy to see us walk in the door, even if we had just been out to the garbage can. We had to put him to sleep today, and I'm going to miss him a lot.


Flea said...

Oh Lisa. I'm so sorry. That has to be the worst thing in the world. I'm so sorry.

Just yesterday I read this post ( and the woman recommended the book Remembering Ruby specifically for reading to kids after the loss of a loved family pet - really a family member.

He's a real looker, that Jo. May he rest in peace.

bensrib said...

Hi Lisa, Just found your blog and wanted to share my sympathies. I put my 10 year old Yorkie to sleep in October and cried and cried. Obviously you were a good mommy to JoJo and he had a wonderfully happy life. Karen

Sherri said...

Going now to find Ginger and love on her :( sad! We just take for granted that she will always be here. So much of what you wrote could have been about Ginger...really made it hit home!
It was written beautifully!!!

Natalie said...

Oh, I'm sorry to hear that Joey Zaza (my favorite of Jo's names) had to be put to sleep. :( That is so difficult to do. I remember when you went with me to put Goldie down...I never wanted to go straight to the bar so bad in my life. Joey will be missed, but I know you guys gave him such a great life!!!