In Loving Memory of Trevor - July 31, 1999 - April 19, 2015
Form follows function, but comfort and style is certainly appreciated....Trevor MacCauley Conner
We had barely gotten Dexter home and settled in July of 1999 when we decided we wanted another little Pug boy. By mid September, we found a special little black boy just outside of Topeka, KS. He was the smallest of a litter of six and by far the pluckiest. Enough so that he promptly began to chew on the buttons of Lowell's shirt when Lowell picked him up. Trevor was no bigger than a minute, but he exhibited the most attitude from the moment we met him and we knew he would be our Trevor.
Suddenly, we were blessed with two beautiful Pug boys – Dexter and Trevor, and it did not take them long to become fast friends as well as brothers. And then we really began to learn about the dynamics of a pack.
There was no doubt that Dexter was the alpha. So what did that make Trevor? Was he the omega? Not even. Trevor became the beta in training – which turned into a full-time job once Ian came into the fold. Even though Trevor was less than half of Dexter's size, Trevor cared for Dexter and took good care of him. From the get-go, Trevor happily cleaned Dexter's ears, washed his face, and sometimes herded him inside. It sounds as though Trevor was subservient – perhaps in a position much lower than beta. But we suspect Trevor chose or assumed that role or position in the pack. Had he been the first-born, he may have naturally become the alpha. But as the second, he more or less assumed the second-in-command position – perhaps the care-taker or even mother-role. I suspect this is what Trevor wanted to do. It was a part of his makeup and it was where he was most comfortable.
Before Trevor and Dexter were a year old, we enrolled them in puppy class. While Trevor never seemed to have a problem with other Pugs, various trips to the vet showed us he had some issues with other breeds. The first time we walked into class, Trevor attempted to take a full grown Belgian Malinois to task. We knew we had our work cut out for us. In the end, Trevor emptied numerous citronella collars barking at the other dogs. Even though he and Dexter graduated the class, Trevor never quite accepted other breeds except our next door neighbor's white German Shepherd named Addie.
Trevor had a way with people and especially women. I recall once on a walk, several ladies were leaving a home and crossed the street to meet him. He fell to the ground and rolled over while the ladies tickled his tummy. He peed on himself (as any young man might do) and the ladies giggled. Trevor also had a way with other Pugs. At our annual Pug Parliaments, Trevor worked the room (or yard as it were) and oozed charm, savoir faire, and style. It was at that point that we began spinning little stories about Trevor. At Pug Parliaments, Trevor was the guy (metaphorically speaking) in the white dinner jacket with a girl on each side holding a Compari. Then off to play Baccarat. The life of an international playboy. Trevor was the James Bond of the Pug world, erudite and continental. Ladies’ Pug, Pug’s-Pug. Pug-about-town. The ladies want him and men want to be him. We also dubbed Trevor El Mariachi - Pug boy by day and romantic guitarist by night - after the 2006 Pug Parliament when Trevor met and fell in love with a new member named Zsa Zsa. This romance went on for the next several Pug Parliaments.
Trevor's favorite food was rice and like his brothers, he came to expect Monday night's Chinese takeout. To this day, the Boys get their own container of rice every Monday and Trevor always knew the moment the food was brought into the house. His other passion was plush donuts. Once we figured out this was his toy of choice (he picked it out at Petsmart), we began buying plush donuts for every occasion - birthdays, christmas, Arbor Day - you name it. We then observed an interesting ritual - Trevor would take each donut out of his kennel, as though he were doing inventory. Then he would carefully carry and stack (each time in different arrangements) the donuts back into his kennel, then lay in his kennel in a cocoon of donuts and fall asleep. We wondered if he saw something mystical in the donuts - perhaps all things coming full circle.
I've always maintained that our Boys have and had musical preferences. Music is a big part of our lives and that has spilled over to the kids, grandkids, and Pugs. Trevor always seemed to favor the Bossa Nova stylings of Astrud Gilberto and the cool, smooth sounds of Bobby Darin which seemed to be in keeping with his Madmen-era persona.
Trevor also had a fondness for soft fabrics and baths - especially the rinsing. While I would hold the hand-held on his chest, Trevor would stand like a statue. I would always rinse him the longest, calling it gratuitous rinsing. And usually after a bath, he would nestle up on the couch and fall asleep.
Over the years, Trevor had a full time job caring for the pack - Dexter, Ian, Mackie, and eventually Zander. He cleaned ears, nurtured, and sometimes chided. But always with love. In 2009, we lost our beloved Dexter and Trevor was hit the hardest. They were compadres, partners-in-crime, and best friends. We could see the loss and sadness in Trevor's eyes and it was a good couple of months before Trevor regained his zest for life.
Trevor had a way of making friends and Facebook was no exception. I'm not quite sure if it was his charm or expressions (maybe synonymous), but folks seemed to enjoy his posts - one such friend said he was her favorite Pinup Pug. Trevor really enjoyed that one!
When Trevor turned 13, the vet disovered a lump in his neck. After testing, we learned Trevor had thyroid cancer. Needless to say, Lowell and I were terrified - that he had cancer and his only hope would be surgery. Amazingly, the surgeon got the tumor and Trevor was back to his old self in a matter of days. We were told he made quite an impression at the veterinary hospital. The nurses adored him.
As a testament to Trevor's resilient spirit, he later came down with a virus that could not be identifed by a team of vets. This happened last fall after Trevor had turned 15. The prognosis was not an optimistic one (even bleeker than the thyroid cancer), but the next morning Trevor got up from his hospital kennel, pottied, and ate a big breakfast. And came home later that day.
In early April 2015, Trevor lost his ability to walk - either from a disc issue or he suffered a stroke. But he still exhibited motivation and an appetite. After a steroid injection, he began to walk the perimeter of the yard again. Being a Boy of Spring, Trevor would take a rest to enjoy the sunshine and warm breeze. I suspect he was thinking of the coming days when the pool would be brought out and filled with water. Trevor always enjoyed a day at the beach.
Unfortunately, his condition worsened with the onset of seizures. It feels as thought a light has gone out, but we take comfort in knowing that Trevor is at the Bridge with Dexter, Ian, and many of his Pug compadres. Trevor lived life on his own terms and he was his own Pug.