The first time that I saw her was about six years ago. Her owner said she was the runt, just 2 months old or so.
He had me shoe his riding mare and paid me with the pup. I named her Mia, not sure why, then watched my pup grow up.
Mia was a “man’s best friend,” the Irish Setter kind. I’d never seen a dog like her. To me, the perfect find.
So then I bought a book called, “How to Teach Your Dog to Heel.” But I’m sure my dog was thinking. This guy can’t be for real.
When teaching her I’d get that look, the one we all have seen: “You’ve tried to teach me this before.” You all know what I mean.
I thought she’d make a good bird dog. I’d seen how she could run. And when I blasted two big hens, she ran. From my shotgun!
It took me two full days to get that Irish Setter back. So when it came to huntin’, guess she didn’t have the knack.
I wasn’t really angry when my dog ran off to hide, ‘cuz when I wasn’t shootin’, she was right there by my side.
At night when I’d be coming home, she’d be there at the gate. I’d see that red a mile away. I knew how I did rate.
She’d jump up in the pickup and would ride down to the shed. My kids would always yell out loud. “Here comes the Flyin’ Red!”
But then one day I hadn’t looked and didn’t see her jump. I heard my setter give a yelp, then felt an awful bump.
Well sure enough my dog was gone. It happened all too fast. My grandma taught me years ago. Good things don’t always last.
Crying couldn’t bring her back, but my kids sure howled some tears. And quietly I shed a few. She’d been my dog for years.
So I made a headstone for my dog, and on that rock was penned. “You weren’t much good for hunting but you sure were my best friend.”