Biscuit has left us.

At the time when there is so much human death and suffering in the world it is difficult to focus on the demise of a dog. However, when Biscuit died this last Thursday it was still difficult for our family.

Biscuit came to us over 15 years ago and was reportedly a “beagle mix.” As he grew to over 65 pounds it was clear he was neither a beagle nor a mix of anything. He turned out to be a “Tennessee Walker coon hound” that had been specifically bred to aggressively chase raccoons up trees. While Biscuit was clearly well designed for that task, we had no need for his special capabilities.

Biscuit’s breeding meant he could climb a 6-foot fence looking almost like Spider-Man in the process. This allowed him to escape his dog run and gain intimacy with the things he most loved, predominantly deer excrement. Why he was so enamored with this I’ll never figure out, but it led to a man versus dog exercise of trying to raise the fence surrounding the dog run ever higher to keep him caged. There were a couple of years when we got it up to 10 feet and he would howl in frustration. Biscuit then started to tear down parts of the fence to escape.

Beyond this unique capability Biscuit was fairly limited. He never figured out how to open a door or gate, or even how to go downstairs. On the occasions where he wound up on the wrong end of a staircase, we had to carry him down. It was a strange dichotomy.

Unfortunately, Biscuit developed Cushing’s disease several years ago, which basically meant he was “on steroids.” Despite supportive measures, he had a very progressive decline and our home basically became a dog hospice the past 6 months. But since he escaped the “kill shelter” over 15 years ago, he had a good run.

Biscuit was in many ways a simple creature. His life was focused around three things; eating, running around crazily and recycling his food. Unlike some of our other dogs he did not get hung up about anything other than being fed.

All of this made Biscuit the perfect editor for a blog post. He never was trapped in the aesthetics of anything related to coronavirus and simply focused on the reality of dealing with the pandemic. In his finest moments it was almost as if he was trying to climb the fence out of the crazy limits that COVID-19 placed on our society.

Biscuit was very pleased that he lived long enough to know that there was a vaccine and an eventual end to the pandemic. Tomorrow, his final blog post appears entitled “Biscuit’s least credible rumors about the coronavirus vaccine!” 

He also told me to tell everyone to get the vaccine even if he wasn’t around to benefit from it.

Postscript: a big shout out to Mark at Country Kennel who provided Biscuit some of his happiest days!

Published by jbakerjrblog

Immunologist, former Army MD, former head of allergy and clinical immunology at University of Michigan, vaccine developer and opinionated guy.

98 thoughts on “Biscuit has left us.

      1. Sorry to hear of Biscuit’s passing. Also sorry that we will likely not see you this holiday, but clearly understand. You, Lisa and Liz will be missed but in our thoughts and prayers.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Many many condolences. You left out one thing in your description of what was Important to Biscuit. Your love.
    Our dogs are a constant reminder of love. May you keep his with you forever.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Touching. Lucky Biscuit. Thanks for posting.

    On Sat, Nov 21, 2020, 12:00 PM Pandemic Pondering wrote:

    > jbakerjrblog posted: ” At the time when there is so much human death and > suffering in the world it is difficult to focus on the demise of a dog. > However, when Biscuit died this last Thursday it was still difficult for > our family. Biscuit came to us over 15 years ago and was” >

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sorry about your loss.Sounds like a wonderful pet.I really appreciate your reviews of covid related information and it has helped our physicians and staff navigate this pandemic.Biscuit became a part of my daily routine.Thank you

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This is the most touching eulogy for a dog I have ever seen. In the darkest of days, Jim, your humanity shines brightest. Dianne and I send our sincere condolences.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. We MOUURRRRNNNNN for Biscuit.

    I was also present when we put down our beloved white labrabor Sidney, who raised my children for 16 years (parents had nothing to do with it!),




    On Sat, Nov 21, 2020 at 12:01 PM Pandemic Pondering wrote:

    > jbakerjrblog posted: ” At the time when there is so much human death and > suffering in the world it is difficult to focus on the demise of a dog. > However, when Biscuit died this last Thursday it was still difficult for > our family. Biscuit came to us over 15 years ago and was” >

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Dear Jim, I savor each of your Pandemic Ponderings. Most especially in the world of Covid that has been complicated by a political overlay of misinformation and plain old fashioned confusion, your postings have been a beacon in the fog. Biscuit has played such an important role, with you as his faithful spokesman, by mixing in just the right about of sardonic levity. May God bless both you and dear Biscuit!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Jim, so sorry to hear of your loss, my sincere thoughts and condolences. It is so hard to lose a family member, it sounds like Biscuit had an incredible life. Hang in there.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. So deeply sorry for your loss –but what a wonderful life you were able to provide for Biscuit. Here in Nashville we see lots of the coon hound breeds on walks with my own furry companion. I have followed your writings from the beginning –I hope Biscuit is still able to provide inspiration to continue your blog —I truly find it a beacon of truth in a sea of overwhelming confusion about this awful predicament we are in. Thank you again for your guidance and giving a second chance to a dog who needed it most—he is somewhere running fenceless fields chasing racoons and waiting to greet you again someday.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. We are so sad about Biscuit. He seems to have truly been Man’s Best Friend and who doesn’t need a best friend during a pandemic! We will miss his wisdom and look forward to his last post tomorrow. Biscuit was a lucky puppy to have been in your home for so long. And yes, it sounds like he had a life well- lived.
    Please keep up your amazing posts. Sanity in the midst of chaos.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. The most important part of living is giving love and respect for those we care for…with great sadness for your loss, but joy for the love you gave to Biscuit.


    Liked by 1 person

  11. I am so sorry to hear about Biscuit–it is obvious he was a much beloved member of your family for a long time. Condolences to you and your family…

    Liked by 1 person

  12. So very sorry for your loss! Our dogs have been such a comfort during this year providing entertainment, unconditional love and companionship during a time when we have been isolated from family and friends. The loss of one of them would be devastating and I feel your pain!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Please know I am very sorry to hear about Biscuit! I valued his insight on the virus enormously. Certainly his past exploits contributed to his dedication and diligence in ferreting out the truth ( or at least determining the weakness) in a conclusion. Thank you for providing his interpretations. Stay safe. Stay well.

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

  14. So sorry for your loss Jim and Lisa, our thoughts are with you. Our pets leave paw prints on our heart for sure. I remember when Biscuit first came to live with you.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. So sorry to hear this sad news. Your beautiful eulogy to Biscuit leaves me at a loss for words on my part and deep sadness for you, your family, and others who knew and loved him.

    I think that people who don’t keep pets in their home don’t realize how deep the bond is between us and our pets, They truly are fully members of our family. You gave him a good life and for that you should be proud. If the story of the Rainbow Bridge turns out to be true, you two will meet again.

    —Chris G.

    P.S.: Have you read the book “The Art of Racing in the Rain?” If not, now might be a good time…

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Oh dear. Brian and I are so sorry to hear of Biscuit’s passing. Times are hard enough and only compounded by the loss of a beloved family pet member. We love Country Kennel too. Lucy and I have run in to Lisa there a few times. Mark and crew are fantastic. Our deepest sympathies, Deb, Brian, and Lucy

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Aw, Jim, sorry to hear about Biscuit! Such a big loss. Glad he kept you on your toes all those years, and thanks for your shared wisdom on getting us through pandemic. Much appreciated.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Good boy Biscuit. Biscuit has been the “Will Rogers” of the coronavirus pandemic: a humorist and philosopher who cloaked information and insight with humor. Laughter is the best medicine, Biscuit. You lived long and were well loved. Condolences to your humans. Wishing you racoons to chase and low fences to jump, good food and deer excrement to roll into your shoulders. Good dog Biscuit.

    Liked by 1 person

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