Famed Maryland canine gastronome dies peacefully at home at 13 1/2
Hailey, alpha dog extraordinaire, left the mortal world on Sunday June 5th at her home in Garrett Park, MD. She was surrounded by her human and canine family members. Affectionately known as “Boppy” or “Bopp-Star” (derivatives of Hail-Bopp) the yellow Labrador Retriever joined the family at the age of one. She immediately revealed herself as a force to be reckoned with.
From a young age Ms. Star demonstrated what would become a lifelong interest in gastronomy. Friends recall her seemingly insatiable interest in breaking culinary ground. She experimented early on with nontraditional sources of protein, including flip flops, banisters, sushi and textiles. Before dumpster diving was “a thing” embraced by hipsters, Hailey mastered the art of stealthily and quickly retrieving and inhaling discarded food. Before foraging was de rigueur for top chefs, Hailey explored the ½ acre property on which she lived, finding delicacies as varied as bamboo, metal cans, dandelions and rabbit poop. Her love of food continued until the day of her passing, on which she enjoyed a perfectly cooked hangar steak.
In addition to her culinary pursuits, Ms. Star was a renowned strategist, following the Machiavellian school of thought. While her innovations in duplicity are too numerous to recount, she is best known for her strategy of luring her puppy brothers to the back door and, once they were safely out on the deck, gleefully depositing herself in their previously occupied location — the coveted “spot” at the corners of the couch.
While generally happy to lie on the deck, in front of a blazing fire, or under her humans’ feet entwined in the bar stools at home, Hailey reveled in her annual trips to the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Known for a week each year as “the Mayor of Avon,” Hailey would greet beachgoers, monitor the safety of her humans as they swam, and enjoy long jogs and walks to the Avon Pier and beyond. She assumed her rightful place under the beach umbrella, taking up the majority of the shade. She occasionally deigned to allow her brother Dixon or a sunburned human to squeeze in to escape the sun. It was during one of these family vacations that Hailey ate nearly an entire week’s worth of dog food, resulting in an overnight visit to the emergency room. On many occasions the humans would search the house, calling for Hailey, only to determine that she had taken herself to the beach. It was at The Canary Sings that Hailey was allowed to lie on the couch, fulfilling a lifelong dream.
Hailey Bailey Hutchison Hail-Bopp Boppy Bopp-Star Callejon-Whiteside was born somewhere in Maryland in 2002. Little is known of her first year of life, but it is generally agreed that Hailey won the lottery when she found her forever home. Her family came to appreciate that she was often prickly on the outside (especially when her feet were touched or when trying to extricate a stolen shoe from her mouth) but a sweetheart on the inside. She was fierce, and fiercely loyal. Stubborn, and stubbornly determined. She had the softest ears in the world and, like most of us, just wanted to give and receive head rubs. She brought many moments of laughter, exasperation, entertainment and love that will be held closely as precious memories.
Hailey was preceded in death by her older brother Dillon (Chesapeake Bay Retriever), and is survived by her extended canine family, including Mickey (Golden), Bodie (English Lab) and Dixon (Westie) and her devoted humans, who will miss her more than she knows. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Hailey’s name may be made to the animal charity of your choice.