She had such character. I remember going down to the basement when they were very little, our first litter – this heap of pups. And Pix’s head always came up first, the sole white, by far the biggest, not imperious, but as Jan said, entitled, on her own wavelength.
Because of her commanding personality, looking after old number one first, from birth always the biggest, juiciest tit, initially we started calling her “Bertha,” as in Big Bertha, but that was kinda pejorative, so we opted for Beatrix, as in the Queen of the Netherlands, but that quickly was shortened to Trixie, which had already been taken. Here’s how:
Back around 1970 coming home late one night from town I came around a curve up in Tantallon and someone had dumped two beagle pups in the road. I hit and killed one. The other I gathered up and rescued. It was soon adopted by Keith Dauphinee who named her Trixie. A name, therefore, not available for our Bertha/Beatrix - it came with sad memories attached. But our B/B had already begun to learn her name. We needed something that rhymed with Trix. For us film/TV hacks, the solution was simple. Pixel.
She was such a comedian. When you called her, “Pix, come!,” she would look away, like there might be some better options close by. But when you said “Pix, sit!”, THEN she’d come. The only dog on earth that thought sit meant come. Like Steven Wright’s bit – “I had a dog. I named him Stay. I’d call him, ‘Here, Stay. Here, Stay. He went crazy.”
Pix was a comedian, no question. Always good for a laugh.
When I used to smoke dope, my lips would stick to my protruding canine. Jan would shake her finger – I know what you’ve been up to. Pix had the same problem. Not the dope, but her lips would stick to her teeth. We’d shake our fingers at her and say, “We know what YOU’VE been up to, Miss Pix.”
Right up to her last day, she loved to sit up on the hill above the barn just looking out, the sea breezes sending scents up her nose. She’d drift away to some dreamland of her own, dreaming of ocean voyages perhaps. S’okay, she was entitled to her dreams.
But we’re no longer entitled to Pix.
What a beauty.