Sunday, January 25, 2009

Hardest Post Ever

Paco is dead.

He died last night while we were at dinner. I guess he broke out of the fence (we have a short fence that separates our yard from the front house) and then, while trying to get back into the house, tried to jump over the fence, didn't make it, got his head caught in between the fence pickets, and strangled. By the time we got home he was dead.

I cannot explain how much this event rocks my core.

This wasn't supposed to happen. He was supposed to get old and grey and crotchety. He was supposed to raise Xochitl. He was supposed to make me a millionaire so I could get taxidermy done to his head when he did finally kick the bucket.

There are so many "what-ifs" in this situation but what I can't shake is the image of him hanging in the fence. His feet couldn't touch the ground and his toenails were bleeding from the attempt to get his head unstuck. The last thing he wanted to was get back home and he never made it. He died alone.

The simple act of putting the key in the gate brings back the image. Without the aid of sleeping pills it would have kept me up all night last night, but, as it was, it only kept me up about half the night.

Today we drive up to Napa and get him cremated. And I think I'll commission Tim to make a piece to hold the ashes.

I still can't believe it. I feel like there's a big hole in my life. The night before he died we went out, took Paco, and left the baby at home. At one point, we were at a restaurant having a beer under the outside awning. I looked down at Paco and had a moment of realizing just how much he made me feel complete. We were so in tune with each other that we could move in sync. Together we made a whole and now it's broken.

Magical aura



If anyone wants to do anything for me/us/Paco then make a donation to BADRAP under his name.

60 comments:

Home2k9 said...

Oh God. Ana... I am SO SORRY. The tears are flowing for you guys right now, I can't imagine what you must be going through. Your post had me gasping for air and I'm holding my babies close while I send hugs to you. This is a terrible, terrible tragedy and I'm sure it's going to be a hard one to move on from. All I can say besides I'm sorry is that Xochitl was a gift to help heal from the loss of Paco. Every time I lose a dog, I find myself infinitely grateful for the ones who remain to dry my tears and keep me moving forward. We will honor your wish and send some love to BadRap, if there's anything else we can do... please let us know.

Shanda Drawdy said...

Ana, I'm so sorry. I was crying (again) over my Lemon when I saw your terrible news and now I cry for them both- hot angry tears over the way the world can really hand it to you sometimes.

There is nothing that can make this right that I can offer you, but still I give my condolences and love to you & Aaron and everyone else who played a role inside Paco's theatre.

Paco, you will be so missed by so many. ~Shanda

Nicole said...

I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. I am in tears. May Paco rest in peace and may you, Ana, find peace within your heart as well.

Kadillac Grrl said...

Oh, Ana. I am sitting here in tears, sobbing. I wish I could give you a hug right now. Paco was a special, special boy. I am sorry you did not get to see him get old and grey. I am sorry we won't hear tales of Paco's life, I am sorry you had to find him in that manner. I am just very, sad...

Stephanie

themacinator said...

i tried to post something this morning, but as usual, your blogger ffought with me. i thought this was a bizarre joke that i kept waiting to hear the punch line, but i think it's a bizarre joke from life, instead. i'm so sorry. so so sorry. if there's anything, anything i can do, let me know.

goober said...

i just keep reading this over and over again and keep crying about it. paco was one of my first friends when i moved here. i was so happy when you would let me watch him for the night while you and aaron when out because i didnt know anyone yet in SF. he would cuddle in the bed with me and keep me company. such a loving wonderful dog. i was lonely and sad in a new city but paco would listen to me, hug and lick my face. he helped me ease into my life here.

i cry for the worlds loss of him as well as for you. i know how much he was a part of you and have no grasp of how hurt you are right now. if there is anything at all i can do for you and aaron please do not hesitate to ask.

Mars said...

Ana,
We are so sorry for your loss. Paco will be dearly missed by the many people that he charmed. I count myself honored to have met him.
Love,
Margaret

oliverisalert said...

Oh Ana, this is a really tough one to go through. Especially since you've adjusted your entire life to include Paco. May I just say that Paco is an amazing dog? I LUV him and will definitely miss him when I go to your studio. I don't think that its good to revisit his death. Just a horrible horrible accident. In Paco's short life, you gave him 200% of yourself, which both of you were lucky to enjoy together. Take care and give me a call if you need anything.

semperfey said...

dude,

i'm really sorry to hear this. he will of course be missed. take care of yourself.

jack

maestra said...

i am so sorry for your loss- you don't know me, but i found your company a couple of weeks ago and emailed you over the weekend. i just saw your post on the pb forum today. what a tragic loss, i'm crying just thinking about it. my heart goes out to you and paco. life is too short and too cruel. you're in my thoughts. take time to heal.

maestra said...

i am so sorry for your loss- you don't know me, but i found your company a couple of weeks ago and emailed you over the weekend. i just saw your post on the pb forum today. what a tragic loss, i'm crying just thinking about it. i read your blog with a cold knot of horror in my stomach- my heart goes out to you and paco. life is too short and too cruel. you're in my thoughts. take time to heal.

Jen M said...

Ana
I am so sorry to hear that you had to say goodbye to Paco under these circumstances. We don't know each other, but I just recently ordered collars for my pitties and have been enjoying your blog. I have admired Paco from afar - so know that his fan club on the East coast is keeping both you and he in our thoughts.
Jen M

Chrissy Lopez said...

Ana,

I had to call my mom last night and cry to her about this. He was such a good boy. May your company live on in his name and he will never be forgotten.

Christine Lopez, of Mijo and Bambi

Ryngwrayth said...

I am so incredibly saddened for your huge loss. ((hugs))
Gina H.

Marie said...

Oh God, Ana. I am so so so sorry.

You are in our thoughts. And, Paco lives on in so many wonderful (and hilarious) stories and memories.

Peace to you,
Marie@Bark

Kittymao said...

Ohh, poor Paco.
It breaks my heart to read this- I would have given anythign to meet that guy. My heart is with you and I am so sorry to hear of your loss.

pitbullgurl said...

Oh no. I am so, so sorry. Things like this are just not supposed to happen. You don't know me, I came across this blog through a friend and had to comment. I have nightmares about some type of freak thing just like this happening to my girl. I simply cannot imagine how I would be able to deal with it, and I am so incredibly sorry that that's the task you are now faced with. My heart and deepest sympathies are with you.

Princess said...

Ana, As a stranger I hate to intrude on your sad moment but as a fan of your collars and work and as a fellow person with a pit bull as a family member, I am deeply sorry for your loss. The manner in which Paco had to leave you is unthinkable and I can't imagine everything you are feeling. My thoughts and prayers are with you!!

R3K9S said...

I am so so sorry.

RIP Paco. Run hard and free at the bridge. Watch over your peeps...

Meg said...

Ana - I don't know you, but was forwarded your post by a pit bull friend. I cannot imagine your loss. Please know that many pit bull owners in New Orleans understand your grief because we know what amazing animals they are. It's obvious you gave Paco a wonderful life full of love.

cleverbeatrice said...

there are no words. i am going to hug and kiss and take Cinnamon and Ziggy Piggy to the park right now. i can't even believe it. i am also going to fix my fence and it all just feels so futile but important at the same time.
i am sooo sorry, i can't imagine. please be good to yourself.

TabLVT said...

I'm so sorry to hear that, Ana. I can only imagine how hard this must be for you. You and your family are in my thoughts. Paco will always be remembered.

~Tabitha and Red

James said...

Ana,

I can't imagine how much you're hurting. Be well.

Anna said...

It just seems like a cruel joke. I am so sorry for your loss. I wish you peace in this time.

Dagnabit Blah said...

I am so sorry for your loss. Those without dogs just don't understand how important and integrated they get in our lives. My wife and my thoughts are with you.

Maggie said...

Hi Ana,

I am so sorry for your loss. Paco was a handsome young man and I wish I could have met him.

You do him a great service by sharing his stories and the products he inspires. Your story may save another life or other lives.

There are dog runs in my neighborhood in NYC with potentially dangerous fences. Concerned doggy moms and dads try to explain the hazards of prong and picket top fences, but the parks administrators just don't understand because there haven't been any tragedies (yet). Perhaps sharing Paco's story will help them understand the dangers and be willing to change or modify the fences so they're safer.

My "mom" wishes she could give you a big hug and help you tear down that fence.

Kisses and snuggles,

Maggie O

Jay DB said...

oh no....
francis told me tonight and so i checked myspace. im really really sorry to hear about your loss. paco and paco collars were one of the best things that happened to me in san francisco.
i'm thinking of you all, hoping time will heal.

Jay (UK/London)

Raindog said...

Deepest condolences and sympathetic tears from me and Rain. Though we never got the pleasure of meeting Paco, his personality and good looks touched us all the way up the coast. I'm am thinking of you and hoping that the pain gets easier to bear as the days go by. Paco obviously had a great life and family and he wouldn't want you to be sad for too long.
xoxo,
Jenny & Raindog

Aaron said...

I am very sad to hear about Paco and the very tragic way he went to doggie heaven. Gangster and I will miss those funny, silly picts of Paco. Be strong and keep doing all the great things you and Paco Collars do for the doggie community.

Best Wishes!!!

Aaron & Gangster

Beverly said...

I am so sorry for your loss!!! Your story brings tears to my eyes and I wish you healing and wholeness again.

It probably won't help, but:

The First Law states: "Energy can neither be created nor destroyed. It can only change forms." So know that his energy (spirit, soul, whatever you choose to call it) continues, just in a different form, perhaps on a different plane, but continues on.

Take care of yourself and Xochi.

~Bev

Modern Derailment said...

Ana I am so sorry. I can't even imagine what you are going through now. Mine & Phoenix's hearts go out to you.

Megan & Phoenix
BADRAP alumni

HugABull Group said...

Oh Ana, I am so, so sorry for your loss. I only had the pleasure of meeting Paco one time at a Bad Rap conference, but I could tell he was your soulmate! Bailey wears her Paco Collar with pride!

Cherish your memories, and know that you gave him the best he'd ever known.

Hugs to you,
Shelagh, Bailey, Dizzy & Mason

Erin said...

I'm deeply sorry for your loss. My best wishes to you.

Marla said...

Hi Ana,
My 2 rescued pitbulls proudly were their Paco collar's. (Can't tell you how many compliments we've received on them) Paco will be remembered every time a tag jingles on the beautiful collars you have made.

As I sit hear typing with tears streaming down my face, I am comforted by the licks of my 2 bullies. I am SO sorry Paco isn't there to lick away your pain.

Our hearts go out to you all the way from S. Texas,
Marla, Amos & Bella

Jaye said...

OMG! I can't even imagine what it must have been like finding him. I am so very very sorry. It just shows how quickly things can happen. I know you will miss Paco terribly!

Jaye W

Dog Collars and Harnesses.com said...

Ana, I'm so sorry and was so shocked when I seen the e-mail. I can feel your pain as I had a puppy malmute do the same thing years ago and this sort of brought back the vision. It is the worst thing I can think of and there is nothing you can do. Even though it may never go away it will get better. Paco was a great spirited dog and we will miss him dearly. God bless you and your crew. Joan

msnform said...

Ana i am so sorry...please forgive yourself, only the good die young.

massist said...

Anna I am so sorry to hear about Paco! I can only imagine how devestated you must be feeling. My heart goes out to you. I know how much my Piglet makes life, even in the worst times, somehow manageable. You are in my prayers. We will be donating to BadRap in Paco's name so that other pitbulls will have the chance to be loved as you loved Paco.

LT said...

Dearest Ana, I've been out of touch for a while, but when someone sent me this link and I started to read, I cried like a baby. I'm so terribly terribly sorry. Words aren't sufficient ...

You gave Paco a wonderful life and he gave you his wonderful pittie love, and his spirit will live on in the lives he has touched, including mine (and Olive's).

It's devastating he was taken from you this way.

In grief -- La Tricia

In loving memory of Caesar D. (April 1995-Jan. 6, 2009) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
In loving memory of Caesar D. (April 1995-Jan. 6, 2009) said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Boris said...

Ana,

I so wish I had gotten to meet Paco. I feel that by coming to your shop that I know of him in person.

We still share a bond with you for life with our BadRap rescue. We can't get our big-bully-head around this tragedy.

Just know we think about you often and grieve with you still,

Jim & Patty Boris' Family

Boris still in mourning:
http://geocities.com/orso@swbell.net/index.html

Karma, SD said...

Ana, we are all so very very sorry for your loss. Ang and I were both just stunned and saddened to hear this news. Our condolences to you and yours from all of us at Karma Charms.

Reed said...

Ana,

I just learned today of Paco's passing. What a huge tragedy. I am shocked and so incredibly sad for your loss! My heart just breaks for you! Sincerest condolences to you and yours.

~Rebecca Reed, BLOCKY DOGS

Leslie said...

Ana I am so very, very sorry! I don't even have the word to express the pain I feel in my heart for you. Recently I purchased a beautiful Sybil Lilly Deluxe for my sweet boy Rudy (a red/red-nose APBT) who is my heart and my soul mate, and have been facing the fact that there is something seriously wrong with him. I am a Vet Tech of 20 years and his illness has me and my vets baffled as we are still searching for an answer. I don't know which is better...being 'prepared' and knowing when your love will leave you or having it happen so suddenly, with no time to constantly be thinking about it.
Just know that your darling boy loved you with every cell in his beautiful body, that you were his person, HIS heart, and that he will always be with you, watching over you and loving you.

Sincerely,

Leslie Boyd and Rudy

Kate said...

Dear Paco,

Your time on earth was too short, but your contribution to your breed was huge.

RIP sweet boy.

PitBullLadyDesigns said...

Oh, My. . .

I'm so sorry for your loss. . .

Barbara

thePetPhotographer.com said...

Dear Ana,

Sending you love and healing. I am sorry.

When I think of Paco, I remember an extraordinary spirit. Pure love. Boundless joy.

Our photo shoot with Paco was incredible -- it was such an honor to photograph him. His regal quality and sense of humor will always be in my heart.


Wishing you all our love,
Lori + Flash, the chiweenie (chihuahua-dachshund)

NessnTheo said...

Hi Ana. News traveled fast! I heard about your doggie thru the grapevine. I AM SO SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS!!!!!! I can tell you truly loved your baby. My sympathy goes out to you!

Baztien said...

This is a horrendous terrible loss for Ana and me. Considering I was there when the little tike being only a palm size snuck into the trash and ate all the spoiled milk and similar antics. We would always jokingly say I was like Paco's Fairy Godparent/Godfather. Having also to have lost my father only days earlier, dealing with the loss of a beloved. I can still remember playing tug-o-war with Paco moments before moving. Paco will live in the hearts of many and will certainly never die in mine. Best deepest condolences,
Sebaztien aka Unicorn

Elaine said...

I am so incredibly sorry to hear about the loss of Paco. He was a great looking dog and certainly gave your website a huge identity. I love your collars and have my eye on a couple for my dogs. When I buy them, they will always remind me of Paco. God Bless.

Nichole said...

You and your family are in my thoughts.

I am deeply sorry for your loss.

Pam Lambros said...

Ana-just read the post and my heart goes out to you. I feel so much sadness as it appears you and Paco were so close. I am crying as I write, knowing the loss is so painful. My vizsla clan and I will send our love your way.

Anastasia and Vegas said...

Ana I am sooo sorry for your loss! I just read the news and you are in my thoughts and prayers.

Aroo Studio said...

Ana,

We are so saddened to hear of the tragic loss of Paco. His legacy will forever live on in our hearts. Paco knows how dearly he was loved & we will all miss him.

laura said...

Oh My God, I just read your email...I had no idea...I am sooo sorry ana. What a horrible tragic way to loss Paco. I can relate to the intense pain of a sudden loss of a bery beloved dog. My English Bulldog just died in a horrible accident (hit by a car while I walked him on a leash) just 2 months ago. He was wearing your Paco collar the night that he died. Good luck in your search for a new "Paco" ....my deepest sympathy to you.
laura sepich (Pittsburgh, Pa.)

Pam said...

Ana,
I'm a volunteer at the Berkeley shelter and I ran into you last week as you were looking at dogs. A FANTASTIC male just came in. His name is Bo-- gets along great with other dogs, and of course is a lover with people. He's in kennel #57, if you want to meet him. You can also check him out on line at www.virtualpetadoptions.com, drop-down menu for Berkeley Animal Care Services. Just a thought.
Pam

Anonymous said...

Ana ...
I have not been on PBF for a while, and I just read the post on PBF about your search for a new pup, and about the sudden loss of Paco.
I can not find the words that could express how truly sorry I am for your loss of Paco.
Just know, you are in my thoughts. ~ Deb & Tonka

Phoenix Animal Rescue said...

Ana,
I am so sorry to hear of your loss of Paco and the way in which you lost him. There are simply no words to express how awful we all feel for what you went through, and go through each day as you miss your Paco.

I am truly sorry.

Michelle

Eryn said...

Ana,

I haven't had the nerve to read this unitl now. I am so heartbroken for you and for your loss. You are such a wonderful Dogmama and have been such a champion for the K9 community. And of course, all the wonderful things you did for Paco to give him the best life possible.

We send all our love to you. And can't wait to see you at your Grand Opening.

Love
Eryn&Chris
(Georgia's parents)