It is with great sadness that we let friends and family know that our good boy Tanka has transitioned into the next plane.
Tanka became a part of our family in 2012, when we adopted him from the Great Pyrenees Rescue of Central Illinois. They estimate he was at least five years old at the time, and his adoptive name was Buzz, due to the fact that he was found wandering around downstate Illinois with his hair shaved. Buzz, soon be known as Tanka, was chosen to live with us by his sister, Kaiya, who, like most who would come to know him, was drawn to his gentle energy and calm presence.
Tanka was very much a stereotype of his breed. First of all, he was stubborn. Probably the thing he was most adamant about was getting his walks. We could take the most winding, circuitous route imaginable, but as soon as we turned a corner headed for home, he'd recognize it, and immediately start sniffing at every little thing in order to prolong the excursion.
Second of all, he had an inordinate amount of patience. He could be nipped at by little dogs, beset upon by strangers, photographed by tourists, yet he took it all with a calm, generous and humble spirit. There is a lesson here for all of us, should we care to recognize it.
And finally, true to his breed, Tanka was strong. When it came time to chase ducks or geese or squirrels, we came to know the full power of his strength. On more than one occasion, we were dragged by the leash that was attached to him. He was also strong in other ways. When his body began to fail him, when it could no longer keep up with his indomitable spirit, he bore that affront with a strength and dignity we all could only hope to possess.
The last thing people should know about Tanka (and if you were lucky enough to meet him you already know this) is that he was incredibly loved by anyone and everyone who met him. People would pet him one time on the street and forever after they would ask about him. He had the kind of soul that makes you feel better just to be around it.
Tanka has moved on now, and the hole in our hearts is gigantic. But he's joined his sister, Kaiya, and his brother, Niko, and all the other good cousin and friend pups who have been waiting for him. Where he is now, his legs once again work, his bladder is full, and he's marking this new and exciting territory the best way he knows how. We love you, boy, so much.