edited by Laurel E. Hunt (Hyperion)
Animal memorials are nothing new. The Egyptians mummified their dogs, while the Victorians held funeral services for them. Today, there are even virtual pet cemeteries for those who chose to celebrate their loss online.
When Laurel Hunt, the editor of “Angel Pawprints” lost her two beloved dogs, Marmaduke and Molly, within seven weeks of each other, she began to collect the text from various pet memorials. Her book, an affecting collection of short stories, poetry and photographs, is the perfect way to express regrets about a close one’s loss of a dog. For, as many of the writings make clear, many dog owners don’t find as much support as they need during their hour of grief.
Many of the offerings are touching in their simplicity, like the poem by Hilton Brown for Hamish, his Scotch Terrier: “Spread the turf on him light and level; Grave him a headstone clear and true—; ‘Here lies Hamish, the little Black Devil,’ and half the heart of his mistress too.” Others make no apology for their sentimentality. As Henry Willett wrote in 1916, “So let the cynic snarl or smile; and his great intellect beguile; My little dog, so true to me; Will dear to heart and memory be.