Let me introduce you to Ace. But for those closest to him, he was Ace Lucky Bingo.
Ace was my childhood dog. We got him in the spring of 1991 when I was 5, and we put him down just three weeks after my junior year of college, when I was 21.
I remember the day we went to go pick up our new puppy. Ace was the only white half Schnauzer/ half Bichon in the mix of his black brothers and sisters. He wasn’t the one that I originally picked out, but since I was the youngest (and in minority vote) I lost. I remember being bummed, and then as a young child, I remember also being disappointed and shameful of myself for wanting one of the other ones.
But soon enough, none of that mattered. You see, as we were picking out this little white puppy from the breeder, we quickly discovered the reason that made him perfect for our family. The reason in which he got his name (short version and long version). Ace was born on the exact day my grandmother died: February 18, 1991.
Match made in heaven, and thus his name: incorporating cards and bingo all in one; two of my grandma’s favorite pastimes.
I don’t have any photos handy — all the ones I have are photographs and not on me. But Ace looked nearly identical to this dog as a young pup.
Ace survived the infamous Halloween blizzard of ’91, in my dad’s arms as he walked us kids to a couple of neighbor’s houses to trick or treat. And he survived running away a few times. And he survived the many, many years of three kids dressing him up in adult clothes.
As I aged, Ace aged with me. Throughout elementary and high school, Ace ate breakfast with me every day, at the table, sitting in a chair next to me. This was about as cuddly he would get, but still a favorite memory. Not a particularly a snuggle bug, but he showed his affection in his own way, especially as he aged.
He was and has been my only pet. 16 years was most of my childhood and part of my adult hood. Even though he has been gone now for seven years, nearly half as long as his life, some days I still really miss him.
Did you have a childhood pet as a kid? If so, what are some of your favorite memories with your pet?