We brought her home November 26, 2003. She was wiggly, bouncey and pure boxer dog.
She was sweet and protective of our family. She loved to woo-woo at anyone walking by, which was great because we got her, in part, to protect our home.
She loved T. He was three and a half when we brought her home and they instantly became best buds. She never nipped, or growled or did anything but love on him. She was the best dog.
Always super sweet to T. She loved to play and would sometimes stir up trouble just to make things more interesting. She would bounce me and bark, while I pretended to try and step on her toes. She would play this game with me right up until a couple of weeks ago.
Just so sweet and accommodating.
She loved to camp and hike and climb rocks and swim. She was the BEST. CAMPING. DOG. EVER.
One of my favorite memories was taking Joey snowshoeing. She loved the snow. She was wearing a sweater and puppy paws. We hit a part in the trail where there was a flat long run and Joey took off like a bat out of hell. Puppy paws went flying in four different directions. She didn't care, because she loved to run in the snow.
She was so protective of T. Several times at the dog park she placed herself between T and other dogs and would have defended him if she needed to. In the 9 years we had her, she never once nipped or bit at any of us. Ever.
Only boxer we know who loved to play ball. To the point of maddening exhaustion on the part of the humans. She didn't ever get tired, at least not until the end.
She loved her Evil Orange Squeeky Ball. Which she named Squeek. Most annoying ball ever. But man did she love that thing. Evil Orange Squeeky ball was replaced by Evil Pink Squeeky ball. Joey could chase that ball up and down the stairs for hours.
We bred her one time and she had three pups born via caesarean. She bled out on the table and died. The vet brought her back. She was changed after that. Perhaps in part because she became a mama, but I also think in large part because of her bleeding out.
She was such a good mama. And the pups were awesome. We kept all three.
The four of them would play so hard. She was so good with them.
Joey was always the smallest. She never weighed much more than 40 lbs or so, but she grew big pups. Guinness weight 10 lbs at six weeks. The three pups all ended up over sixty lbs. Joey always ruled though. Once the mom, always the mom.
She gave us our boxer rainbow.
A plethora of boxers.
They were pretty noise at times. Joey started getting gray too soon.
Loved being outside.
Loved running and messing with the pups. And the prairie dogs.
Always in the front. Always. She had the soul of a wanderer. Always wanting to see what was over the next hill.
Always with her pack.
Even getting older didn't slow her down much. She loved going to Wyoming. She loved climbing rocks.
The other dogs would get scared or intimidated, but not Joey. She would just look for another way to get up. And up. And up.
She would jump and scramble.
I can't tell you how many times when we were climbing where one of us would ask "where is Joey?" Only to look up and find her somewhere on the rocks above us.
Joey loved to swim.
Sometimes she would fetch sticks. Or balls.
Sometimes she would just swim cuz there was water there.
Many times we would throw rocks in the water and she would stick her entire head under water, eyes and nose squenched shut, trying to pick the rock up off the bottom of the pond.
We lost our Red dog about a year ago. And then there were only three. They are all getting older and greyer, but Joey still loved to go.
On our last camping trip in August, we knew it wouldn't be too much longer. She had a huge tumor in her neck, but because of the type of tumor and her bleeding disorder, we opted to just let her live out her life without medical intervention.
Ten days ago, the tumor began to grow exponentially. Quickly. And painfully. We kept Joey comfortable, but knew it was just a matter of time. Yesterday it was time.
I carried Joey to the car. Then I carried her into the vet's office. I held her head in my hands, while J and T reassured her. The vet gave her the shot. It was painless and very quick and we held her until her heart stopped beating. The bright, bouncy puppy we brought home was gone.
We had an incredible nine years with Joey. She gave us three pups and her whole heart. She's with Red now and she was always Red's favorite play toy. They'll hang out together until we can all be a pack again.