His name, which chosen for, obviously, the stout of the same name, ended up being appropriate for another reason. He, in my opinion lived up to the name Guinness in the sense of records . . . I called them Guinness' Records. First and foremost, besides being a very large and powerful animal, Guinness had to have been one of the most gentle, if not the gentlest dogs I have ever met, and I am almost certain anyone who has met him will agree. In his 10 years he was witnessed to have growled only one time, and it wasn't even a growl but a little grunt of protest when a then 2 year old (my nephew) tried to sit on his back years ago. Kincaid loved Guinness so much I think he wanted to engulf him.
But he was also nuts! It was the mix of his sweet nature added to a completely bonkers personality (which is what drove to me to call him a Puppy, and never a dog to the very last) that made him who he was.
In my opinion, he won other "Guinness' Records" for: the most times causing an owner to have to call the vets for eating strange items, food or otherwise; amount of creative tricks learned in a short amount of time (I had to stop because I ran out of ideas eventually); the amount of surgeries he had to go through due to aliments and/or self inflicted injury; for his resilience and his ability to deal with various health issues with such acceptance; and above all else, his capacity for absolute love of every single human or animal that he met (including other dogs he occasionally encountered that clearly wanted to eat him for lunch).
At the moment I'm trying to draw on and learn from his record ability to accept situations with grace, strength and determination. It is this that is making me able to deal with his loss a little easier so that I can move forward and focus on all the love and enjoyment that came from having him be part of our lives.
That's all for right now, but I think tomorrow I'd like to start posting up some of the really silly things Guinness has done over the years, there are so many stories, I would love to use this place to put it down in words so it's not forgotten. Perhaps I'll touch on each of the Guinness' Records in a series of posts.
And, I'll leave this on a silly note with an early photo of him, taken a few days after he came home with me, wrestling with a visiting puppy friend. If you take a look at his expression, you'll get a tiny glimpse of the whirling dervish he was!
(Guinness and wrestling buddy, July 1999)