On the Passing of the Age of Thor

He showed up one day at my dad’s place.  We did our diligence, but couldn’t track anyone down so we took him to our place, my wife and I.  He had four legs then.  Thor seemed like a good name….


I always go in for ironic dog names, but he lived up to his in chutzpah, if not wisdom.  He lost his leg to a 3/4 ton diesel pulling a double axle.  I thought it might cure him- slow him down a little, but those diesels pulling trailers became his white whale.  And he was darn near as fast on 3 than 4.  Lifting his leg presented a challenge, until he realized it wasn’t there.  Sometimes he just had to lift the left one though and he’d balance on the two front ones.

IMG_1073 IMG_7597

He made his mark in the world.  He was a pain in the ass, he barked at everything, pissed on everything, chased everything (excepting chickens- a mean old rooster broke that habit pretty early)…


The hen’s wouldn’t let him forget even after that rooster earned himself the soup-pot.


True to his kind, he always had to be where I was -unless there was something better going on…


The coyotes are bad here, like most places in Kansas.  Usually they go after my hens, and Thor was smart enough to stay away- just made noise at them.  A whole bunch were real close for a few nights- carrying on at night like they do.  They must have been too much to resist.  The next day doing the early morning rounds, he wasn’t there.  You get the picture.  It is still a bit of a mystery- he left like he came- but I’ll remember him going in thinking he could lick the whole bunch.


A lot of my neighbors had cause to maybe dance a little at the passing of the fierce defender of 100 yards of compacted gravel.  However, a fair number a coyotes have died since Thor went out.  Not me, I’m not much of a killer, thought not for lack of trying.    My neighbors are better shots than I, and I usually recieve a picture message of a dead Canis latrans.

My good friend Mike Schultz wrote and recorded this little song after living with us and Thor for a time.  He sent it to me just the other day and it made this post worth writing.  Have a listen…  Thor!

7 thoughts on “On the Passing of the Age of Thor

  1. Great post, Jack. Really well written and captures the entire picture of who that little fellow was. He was a dog to be remembered. I laughed out load a few times even reading this. That picture of him with staring down a little black bird (chicken?) is hilarious. Like a Thor’s eye view photo from his vantage point. Thor-vision. Remembering how that tenacious chicken we called the Whore of Babylon would stalk and chase him. I know that wasn’t the really mean one rooster, but it was a pretty funny chicken. Thinking of Thor as Captain Ahab and a certain passing truck being his white whale. Haha.. good, good. Oh, that makes me laugh.

    1. Yeah that whole batch of red roosters were a pretty tough bunch. Thor was pretty funny with the baby chicks. He was so intense around them. When they were in their cage he acted like he wanted to get in there and eat them, but once they were out he felt like he needed to protect them. I am glad I made you laugh.

  2. A wonderful tribute Jack. Sounds like Thor was quite a dog. I loved Mike’s song. Cheryl & I have three dogs now and have had and lost three others over the years. They give us so much enjoyment.

  3. Jack, your memorial of Thor brought tears to my eyes. It can be a precarious life for dogs in Kansas, but I bet Thor enjoyed every day.

    1. Thanks, Ann. I am sure you are right- about Thor enjoying every day, and life being precarious in Kansas. Freedom is costly I guess.

  4. Didn’t know him, but by golly the words, the pictures and the wonderful song conjure up quite a character. I’ve had three dogs in my life up to the present one, and each made a big impact. We spend so much time with them, and the missing is rough when they go. I like to think of Thor believing he could whip those coyotes, going out on a blaze of ‘can-do’! And who knows, maybe he did, or at least compromised a few of them in the last big battle. I hope he’s in Jack Russell Valhalla, wherever that may be!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s