Ode For Neven: Gone Home to Justin

2005 is when I first met him, little Neven. A short and very thin Corgi,

black fur with patches of white on his  face, chest and paws. He was distinguished

and adorable.  I remember how Neven would loyally follow Justin,

Neven would respond to his masters every call;

He’d bark at you if Justin told him too…

I use to get a laugh when me and Justin would wrestle

and Neven would growl at me then gently bite my arm or leg.

He knew we were family,

But he always had Justins back;

And Justin always had his.

Neven loved Justin,

He was Justins true best friend.


Justin loved Neven so much I think he’d forget Neven was a dog.

At breakfast and dinner, Neven ate what Justin ate,

heaped onto his dog food were eggs, bacon, sausage and toast,

or if Justin had spaghetti, the dog had spaghetti.

I remember telling Justin, he was making Neven fat!

Justin simply told me he was making Neven happy,

“He’s a person too,” Justin would say.

Neven also loved his cookies, often yapping and grunting

until someone gave in and gave him one or two… or three…


Nevens charm worked on everyone.

If he liked you, he’d roll onto his side and let you scratch his belly,

happily letting his leg twitch away.

Some of Nevens favorite things were walks, sticks, and squirrels!

Justin trained him well, “Walk! Go for walk!” Justin would exclaim and Neven

would jump up with his ears erect, barking excitedly.

Neven would run out into the yard and grab his latest favorite stick

and do his best to carry it along until someone grabbed it and thew it

for him. He made quite a site in the winter when the snow was just as high

as he was and he was determined to tromp along with a large stick in his mouth.

Who will ever forget bear park?

Where Justin often walked Neven,

and one winter, built a snow fort for Neven by tunneling into a mound of snow!


Sadly that was their last winter together,

in the spring Justin passed away…

I’d never felt so deeply moved by a dogs loyalty until Neven.

Watching him – waiting everyday,

expectantly hoping Justin would walk through the door.

Stephens truck would pull up and Neven would perk right up!

Barking and barking and then running out in to the yard, circling

the truck him and his master had so many adventures in!

He’d look back and fourth to me and Stephen and the rest of us,

with his excited big brown puppy dog eyes!

And then… No Justin….

Just confused, sad, Neven…

He’d then go and lay down in the yard

as if he still had hope, Justin may be close behind,

Neven would be sure to be there if his master came home.

Eventually, I believe it sank it, into Nevens mind that his master wasn’t coming home

and I’ve never seen a sadder looking animal in all my life.

Neven mourned Justins death just as anyone of us people did.


Eventually, Neven took to me.

He’d see me or smell me and he’d get super excited – barking ,

yapping and grunting with love when ever I walked in the door.

And I know it’s only cause of the similarities me and Justin shared.

None the less, I was as loving as I could be, trying to fill his masters shoes.

I’d take Neven on fishing trips, though he never seemed too interested in the fish,

he’d look at what I caught then go lay down.

Nevens later years, were usually spent sleeping or eating.

He didn’t get out as much as he use to, nor did he care too.

We’d do what Justin did “Go for a walk! Walk! Neven walk!”

And he’d just lift his head, look at us and then lay back down.

Neven was now old, and tired, arthritis in his little knees,

with just one more journey ahead of him;

he still was just as distinguished and adorable.

Now this early spring almost 6 years later,

Neven has gone home.

Home to heaven.

Home to Justin.


I kinda like to think, in heaven,

Neven comes over the hill,

old and unknowingly ambling toward his waiting, expectant, Master,

Upon seeing Justin, his ears perk up, he begins to run!

and Justin smiles that Justin smile;

as Neven runs he is transformed into the little puppy

Justin first new him as,

Neven leaps into the air,

into Justins loving arms;

Master and best friend

together again,

at last.


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