Jalapeno, our border collie/Australian shepherd mix, was born in the Dodge City area sometime in January 2003 and subsequently abandoned at approximately six weeks old, being picked up on the streets of that community. Brandon and Kathie shortly thereafter rescued him from the Dodge City Animal Shelter, and he became part of our family for [...]

Jalapeno, our border collie/Australian shepherd mix, was born in the Dodge City area sometime in January 2003 and subsequently abandoned at approximately six weeks old, being picked up on the streets of that community.
Brandon and Kathie shortly thereafter rescued him from the Dodge City Animal Shelter, and he became part of our family for the next 14 plus years, seeing us through the joys and sorrows of life. His life ended on October 19 at 4:35 p.m.
Typically six days a week, Jalapeno would join Brandon on his early morning walks in the northeast quadrant of Pratt. Brandon estimates that he and the dog walked over 8,500 miles together.
Even though he is gone, Jalapeno's memories remain with us. One of Kathie's favorite memories was told to us by our neighbor across the street, Nancy. Once when the animal catcher was after him, Nancy said she watched as Jalapeno successfully eluded capture. He apparently climbed over one fence after another, hopping from yard to yard to avoid the snares of the animal control officer.
One of Brandon's favorite memories comes one winter when Pratt had had a significant amount of snowfall and Jalapeno had not been walked for a day or two. When Brandon opened the front door onto a sunny day, Jalapeno burst out, running a huge circle through the snow and across the street, all the while smiling, as our neighbors, Sharla and her daughter Brynn, watched on, amusedly.
Another memory involved a thunderstorm that came through Pratt many years ago. Sometime after this storm passed through Pratt, a volunteer from the hospital called and left a message on our answering machine informing that they would keep Jalapeno until noon before the animal control officer would have to be called. Jalapeno apparently became frightened during the storm, escaped our backyard, ran across Highway 54 and followed someone into the hospital. We began keeping him inside the house not long after that.
Kathie will always remember Jalapeno's acute sense of hearing (at least before his hearing declined the past year or two) and how he appeared almost instantly when a treat bag or Ziploc bag containing bread would be opened. Brandon will probably always think of him when he finishes a jar or sunflower (or some other nut) butter jar or a yogurt container, which he would set on the floor for Jalapeno to clean for the recycling center. Kathie will miss him and the excitement he always had on Christmas when we would open for our beloved pet the wrapped present or two (usually something to chew on) with his name on the package.
There are countless memories to treasure of our good friend and loyal companion, Jalapeno. We hope that we made a good life for him and will always be thankful for the joy he brought into our lives.
One last song, 'I'll meet you in my memory,' by Walnut Valley Festival regular Andy May: 'I know the time has come to tell you goodbye / I know I can't hold you, and so I won't try / And though I am losing a light in my life / I know a place where it's still shining bright / I'll meet you in my memory / Where you'll always have a smile for me / And you'll be your same old used to be / It comes back to me so easily / Long after I have set you free / I'll hold the love you gave to me / Till tomorrow meets eternity / I'll meet you in my memory.'