Saturday, February 12, 2011

Savannah Dog

For the majority of Erin’s years she was a fixture in the squares, parks, cemetery, dog-friendly businesses and tourist hotspots of historic Savannah Georgia.  From an early age, my liver and white floppy eared dog was often seen stalking squirrels from square to square with a primary concentration in Chippewa and Madison squares. While she gave the squirrels a break and only cared about the chase, there’s no doubt the furry menaces can now sleep a little sounder at night.  As the temperature rose and the brutal humidity overwhelmed everything brave enough to step outside, Troup Square became a frequent destination because of its doggie water fountain. The double-sided watering hole is a popular stop with pooches of all sizes and Erin definitely appreciated the endless supply of fresh cool water.  Tourists aboard buses and horse drawn carriages gawked and snapped photos as she obliviously lapped up the refreshing coolant; no doubt she is in many photo albums across the globe.

Colonial Cemetery was a place of much happiness and contentment to Erin and thus me. Significant time was spent exploring every inch of the hallowed grounds with that powerful snout of hers and it was not unusual to idle away an entire day in this manner.  The massive oak trees, flowering shrubs, ancient gravestones, and above ground crypts along with the usual graveyard recesses provided her with all the entertainment a dog needed. Often her canine friends or other four-legged intruders would make an appearance and there would be many games of chase, tug of war, tandem squirrel chasing, or a leisurely session of lounging in the shade begging for attention. She spent many days lying at my feet scanning the treetops for squirrels as tourist’s bestowed compliments while I read or worked the daily crossword. The cemetery held a special place in Erin’s heart and was one of her magical spots on Earth therefore it’s very emotional as I wander the expanse without her.

There were many establishments that welcomed Erin with open arms and she took full advantage of the fringe benefit. Amongst those places were coffee shops, eateries, an independent bookstore, clothing stores, and retailers that sold every type of merchandise imaginable.  As we made our rounds to say “hello”, her friends usually dispensed doggie treats and an abundant of love while they received much attention in return. It was not unusual for her to lie near the cash register pretending to be a throw rug as everyone had to constantly step over or around her lol. Despite the utterings of “she’s no trouble”, I’d call her to my side to avoid any unforeseen accidents but soon after she would wander over to the employee area for additional treats and affection.  The influx of tourists who frequented these businesses were often dog lovers or homesick for their own pooch so Erin received extra doses of petting and adoration from unexpected sources. We loved spending time with these great folks as they graciously gave of their time, love, and treats to and I’ll never forget the kindness shown to my angel over the years.

The streets, alleyways, corridors, and footpaths of Savannah were crisscrossed with regularity and Erin became well known, if not by name then certainly by sight. She was routinely greeted by dog lovers, students, runners, church attendees, tour guides, city workers, and anybody else who recognized her. It’s been said that she was arguably the most popular dog in the city and while I’m not sure about that statement, she was definitely well known and her absence has been felt by so many. Nearly six months after her passing and on a weekly basis, I’m still asked about her whereabouts and that’s a testament to her popularity in the historic district. Erin will be sorely missed by the people of downtown Savannah but surely she is smiling down upon her many friends. Beautiful memories for all involved!!!


  1. Every time I read about Erin, I give my sparky an extra tight hug and say a silent prayer for Erin. May her soul rest in peace and may you heal from within too. lovely post...Erin is very lucky.

  2. Sulekkha, thank you for the kind words and prayer for Erin!!!


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