My other dog is much less trouble these days. He’s just sitting in the box from which he came back from the crematorium, snugly tucked up in his basket by the study fire, with his collar and his favourite toy. He smells a lot better than he did when he was alive, and is much less demanding of walks and food. On the other hand, it has to be said that he is nothing like as much as fun.
My dog, before he was dead. Handsome devil, wasn't he?
A number of correspondents have suggested that there is something rather morbid about this arrangement, and that I should get him out of his box and scatter him in his favourite place. Unfortunately, I point out, that was my sofa in the sitting room. I can’t think that sharing it with a box full of assorted ash is going to do a lot for my comfort when watching TV.
In an ideal world, of course, I’d have carted the sofa outside and used it as his funeral pyre. It would have been like a Viking chieftain being pushed out to sea on his blazing longship. But unfortunately the funeral arrangements were taken out of my hands by a saner ex-partner, and conventional thinking prevailed.
If I follow the same approach when my current dog dies, I’ll have to burn my bed. Bearing in mind what a nightmare it was to get it upstairs and assemble it, I don’t think that’s going to be a runner. Unless, of course, I leave it in situ, and burn down the entire house. Now there’s a thought. I’m sure it’s what he would have wanted.