As we muster on through uncertain times, the gravity of loss brings a sudden clarity, and a grounding, with it’s deep sadness. The outside world falls away, and all that seems certain is the void left behind by those we loved and lost. Just after beginning a new year, with great pain in our hearts, we bid farewell to Aries and Lazarus. Our memories of the time we shared with them keeps us moving forward.
Aries was born in the Big Pack, but his life would take a much different path than theirs. His mother passed away after giving birth to him, leaving he and his sister in need of care since they were very young. The two siblings were brought inside to be cared for along with another puppy named Lazarus who would become Aries’ life-long companion.
Aries and Hope ruled over their little pack, though Hope was more dominant than he. Being raised by humans, they loved attention from their human caretakers, and both being dominant, they insisted that they be petted and loved before their pack-mate Lazarus who was much more submissive than the other two. Aries could sit for hours and be brushed or petted by his humans, though touch one hair the wrong way and he would certainly let you know. Aries was strong willed and confident and always sure that he would get his way no matter what. He also had a big heart and loved his pack-mates dearly, especially Lazarus.
When his sister Hope had began to decline, we learned that both she and Aries had been born with the same spinal condition, though it did not show until their adult years when it was unable to be fixed. After Hope’s passing in 2017, Aries and Laz took courage and solace in each other’s company. They became as one. They were always together and shunned any other wolf that was placed in their enclosure. They lead a simple and honorable life together. Aries still made sure Lazarus knew that he was the leader of their pack, but there was a warmth between them and a strong bond that would last their whole lives.
Over time Aries began to show signs that he was not getting around quite as well as he used to in his younger years, and so we began treatments to help him manage his symptoms. He was strong and his joy at seeing his human friends overflowed even when his suffering became great. Wolves are masters of deception leading you to think all is well, but as we bid farewell to the year 2020 and entered 2021 Aries showed us that his spine was clearly giving him pain. In his eyes the mischief was replaced by pain. His behavior changed. No longer did he come with his Laz to the fence, and Laz too showed a sadness in his eyes that told of his growing weariness and discomfort. They now spent hours in their shelter and did not come out to great their human friends and family. As they lived, the choice was made to allow them to go together with dignity and the grace of their life. After consulting with our veterinarian, and after much deliberation, the difficult decision was made to bid Aries and Lazarus farewell on January 6.
Proud and as strong as any wolf that has come before or will come after. Born here on site to live a full life free of torment and strife. Our beautiful boys, what has happened to the time. You were just puppies and suddenly all grown up and grown to dignified aged wolves. How many years it is not enough I want you back. Do not leave me, us. As the tears flow, I know this is the right choice for you both, but in my mind a scream goes unsaid. STOP! Please stop! The vet asks are you ready, I nod yes. It is a lie. I am not ready; I am still not ready, and it is the next morning. I feel numb. I know I am not alone, the staff and volunteers and all the people who chose these fine beauties to be adopted into their families. We all share in this terrible and unfathomable loss. Solace is taken only in that they left together and crossed the great bridge together. Forever young and wild. Aries was always looking for a good ear scratch. He was always the first to share his opinion and let you know what you were doing wrong and when he was done with you, he would just walk away. Laz, he was much more reserved, and he always had this twinkle in his eyes. Both were and will always be beautiful and we will always be grateful that they shared their lives with us and allowed us to glimpse pure love. Missing you always. Run free and healthy my beauties. ~ Dawn Darlington, President
Farewell Aries. We will never forget your strength and love and the memory of your joyful spirit will always remain in our hearts.
IN LOVING MEMORY ARIES OF SPEEDWELL
Born: December 14, 2008 – Died: January 6, 2021