i never intended to run a eulogy for a dog on my blog, but when i received the above picture, i realized the world needed to hear about this pup. so here’s my exception for Anthony Weinstein, my favorite emergency contact.
the photo is a great testament to his unflagging spirit. although he was fresh from one of his many vet visits (notice his shaved right paw for the IV) he maintained his poodle composure and sat obediently for his portrait. in fact, there’s a 90% chance that, as soon as this photo was taken, he leapt into the arms of the photographer.
he was a rescue found on the wretched streets of Newark, NJ. his ludicrous moniker comes from the apparently devout Catholic who fostered him and named him after the patron saint of lost causes. but i am here today to tell you he was a FOUND cause.
my adoration of Little Anthony started when i lived with my parents. he was cute and affectionate, so i offered to watch him while his people vacationed so he wouldn’t have to stay at the vet/kennel. i was immediately smitten, and in the years after moving to LA, i’d “borrow” him for an afternoon each time i went back east.
with time i learned the following about this affable goofball:
- when he was excited he’d do a little jig, alternately lifting his left and right front paws.
- he’d stand at your feet and curl his upper body when he wanted to be picked up. we called it “doing the curl.”
- once aloft, he had precise requirements. he insisted on being carried on your hip, like a baby, and only on your left side. believe me, i tried the right side just to take a break, but he clamored over to the left. he had communist leanings, for sure.
- my aunt and i confirmed he had a slight overbite, which made him look perpetually amused.
- he was beyond obedient and immediately did whatever you asked.
- he had the measurements of a canine supermodel- five inches wide and 36 inches tall when standing on his hind legs. (i measured him once)
- if he lost track of you he’d search the house, even venturing into the dark basement alone, until he found you.
- he was part baby kangaroo, and routinely leapt from the third step and stretched out his front paws like superman/dog.
- he owned (and adored) a pale blue turtleneck sweater with silver accents. as soon as you held it up he’d start wiggling into it. he was better than a preschooler.
here’s a final anecdote. Anthony ate a combination of wet and dry food. and, although my parents will never admit this, when we watched him, they
heated his wet food in the microwave before giving it to him.
understandably, i once asked why there was dog food in the microwave and they shrugged, “it tastes better this way.”
goodbye, world’s greatest emergency contact. i already miss you.
P.S. thank you so much to the weinsteins, who took exceptional care of Anthony through his multitude of recurring health problems, for putting up with my play date requests, and for that amazing photo.