A Dog Named Eric Neil

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Home Point Real Estate DRE # 01492725

A Dog Named Eric Neil

When we got a Dog as a kid my dad named him Eric Neil – that was supposed to be my name – but my mom named me Eugene Nelson instead. So in a manner of speaking the dog got my name.

Now back in the 70's leash laws were much more relaxed. Eric Neil was allowed to roam free through our suburban neighborhood; although there was lots of open country around and kids and dogs tended to spend a lot of time wondering through fields and forest.

Eric was a cross between a Cocker Spaniel and a Cockapoo (which is a cross between a Cocker Spaniel and a poodle). As it was said that meant he had more cock and less poo.

Generally he was a very friendly dog and left the cats alone; although the cats would sometimes pick on him. Eric's favorite hobby was chasing motorcycles. He never did catch one and am not sure what he would have done if he did.

But I will always remember the one day I had finished cleaning the patio sliding glass door; and then the sound of a motorcycle was heard coming down the street. Eric leaped up from his spot in the living room, ran into the kitchen and hit the door at full speed. (I will always remember the way he ran; his hind legs would actually get in front of his front legs.) Well after that Eric always skidded to a stop in front of the patio door and would stick a paw out to make sure it was open.

The dogs in our neighborhood where just like the kids. They had friends up and down the block and ran in packs. Eric used to hang out with a little terrier named Barney (a spade female) and Barney's son (before the spaying) named Ferd. Ferd was a big dog so I am not sure who the pop was.

Eric was a goofy dog. He would try and follow us places and we would have to lock him up if we were going somewhere a long way off.

One day when I was 13 us kids took off into some nearby woods to work on one of our latest projects – a tree fort. Now you have to understand – tree houses are for sissies, but tree forts are cool. Not really sure of what the difference was between the two. Eric followed along.

Well our Tree “fort” was really no more than a bunch of boards nailed into the branches of a big Eucalyptus tree that allowed us to climb around better, set down, and have fun. We were busy putting in more boards when three big doberman's from a few blocks over came and started barking at us – chased us high up the tree.

Well Eric Neil came flying out of the brush from what ever he had been doing and laid into these big dogs. He growled and snarled and snapped. They surrounded him, but he did not run off and actually started to tangle with them. Then they ran off.

I came down and found Eric with a huge gash in his side and picked him up and carried him home; his blood was running down my t-shirt and I was crying because I thought he would die.

My grandfather had been a vet so my dad did all the animal care based on what he had learned with his dad. He disinfected the cut – and Eric did not fight him. It was a few weeks before Eric got moving again but he did survive.

There is no link to Eric Neil except the memories I carry around of him; and I could not find a picture. But I can still see him in my head like it was yesterday.

There was no better dog than Eric Neil.



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Teresa Cooper
Home Solution Real Estate Services - North Charleston, SC
SC Lowcountry - Charleston, Dorchester, Berkeley

Beautiful story, Gene, and congrats on the win!  I love the image of Eric Neil taking on the big mean vicious Dobies to protect the ones he loved. I'm sure there's another blog in that part of the story alone!

May 01, 2012 01:11 AM #14
Carla Muss-Jacobs, Principal Broker (503) 810-7192
BuyersAgentPortland.com | Portland Metro Exclusive Buyers Agent | 100% Buyer Representation ~ 100% of the Time - Portland, OR
Buyer Focused ~ Buyer Results

Oh, Gene what a terrific story.  A beginning, a middle and in the end, a happy tail wagging story.  Congratulations on 1st place my friend.  Eric Neil, what a great name and what a dog!

May 01, 2012 02:23 AM #15
Li Read
Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring) - Salt Spring Island, BC
Caring expertise...knowledge for you!

Great post...we all have memories of that special fur person pal...you made me remember mine.   Thank you!

May 01, 2012 03:08 AM #16
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

Oh Gene...that is a great story. I could really picture everything you talked about. Eric sounds like he was a wonderful dog, and he proved it by protecting you kids from the mean dogs. I'm glad this story had a happy ending.

May 01, 2012 03:14 AM #17
Donne Knudsen
Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA - Simi Valley, CA
CalState Realty Services

 Crying 1

May 01, 2012 03:14 AM #18
Donne Knudsen
Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA - Simi Valley, CA
CalState Realty Services

Gene - OMG!!!  What a great story!!!  As a long time dog mama, I love hearing stories from my AR buddies about their fur babies.  Even after they are long gone, they will always have a place in our hearts. 

May 01, 2012 03:16 AM #19
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA

My hounds are on my sofa watching me on my laptop....they are such joys and always know my moods and what I need from them....

May 01, 2012 03:22 AM #20
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

I am not sure what to say.  I appreciate you all coming by.  I missed Eric so much when my kids got a dog I got another Cockapoo - but it was not the same.  Eric did have a bit of an ornery streak (they say dogs resemble their owners) but was very lovable.  

May 01, 2012 03:31 AM #21
David Burrows
Classic Realty - Fairfax, VA
No Pressure, Just Seriously Devoted to Real Estate

Gene, I am a true Dog lover...... This is a great story with wonderful memories. Thanks for sharing today...

May 01, 2012 04:42 AM #22
Doug Bullwinkel
Academy Mortgage Group - Roseville, CA
NMLS #281609

If only people were as loyal as dogs, the world would be a much better place.   Thanks for sharing your story of another dog hero.  Yorkies

May 01, 2012 05:20 AM #23
John McCormack
Albuquerque Homes Realty * www.AlbuquerqueHomes.com - Albuquerque, NM
AlbuquerqueHomes.com, Albuquerque Homes Realty

A Dog Named Eric Neil now this is a real love story between boy and dog.  We may not have photo's to hold in hand or to share with the class but have the best photo's of all by holding the memories close to heart of Eric Neil and his best pal.... You!

May 01, 2012 05:24 AM #24
Jill Sackler
Broker Associate, Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. "Said and Done!" - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Congratulations on winning first place. That was a heartwarming story. Just hearing your dog's name automatically brings him to life.

May 01, 2012 11:41 AM #25
Joy Daniels
Joy Daniels Real Estate Group, Ltd. - Harrisburg, PA

What a sweet story Gene...thanks for sharing.  I think Eric is such a funny name for a dog! :)

May 01, 2012 12:09 PM #26
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

Thanks all.  I thought Eric was a funny name for a dog too.  But it was unique.

May 01, 2012 02:05 PM #27
Diane Daley
Caron's Gateway Real Estate - Northumberland, NH

awe, very nice touching story, thanks for sharing it with all of us here at AR... Have a great day!

May 01, 2012 10:53 PM #28
Lyn Sims
RE/MAX Suburban - Northwest Suburbs of Chicago - Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg IL Area Real Estate

Great story & congratulations.

May 01, 2012 11:55 PM #29
Bob & Bonnie Horning
Mount Joy, PA

Lesson learned, if you want a lot of comments, post about a dog. Eric sounds like he was a great friend. We have a real charmer right now named Abby. Border Collie and she runs like you described, I don't know how they do that. The door part made me laugh outloud, Abby has the electric fence... she didn't need to get zapped twice I'll tell you. It ain't just elephants with good memories.

May 02, 2012 08:17 AM #30
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

Bob - he hit that door really hard.  I thought he was going to break it. He was wobbly on his feet for a few minutes after that and in retrospect he probably had a concussion.  

May 02, 2012 08:24 AM #31
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORs® in Clark County, WA

Congrats on winning the Pet Project contest Gene, our dogs really are loyal friends and you did your childhood buddy proud.

May 03, 2012 01:11 AM #32
Kristin Hamilton CA Realtor
Keller Williams Realty - Redlands, CA
(909) 557-6966, CDPE, SFR, CHS-Redlands/Loma Linda

Hi Gene,

Congratulations on your win as their was a lot of participants and some real sad stories. I loved your post and cried while reading it. So glad Eric Neil survived and what a great childhood memory of your father as well. I am sure your grandfather would have been proud.

Hope your Memorial Day weekend if filled with fun.

May 28, 2012 03:12 AM #33
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