“Can we move back home?”, my daughter asked me after she ended a long term relationship. I was in the middle of renovations and I considered her plea for just a moment longer than I would have otherwise. “We” meant the dog as well. Don’t get me wrong. I do love dogs. We always had one in my family home. There was Shane a white German Shepherd who sadly was stolen from us when he was just a puppy followed by Jet our black labrador. Jet was gentle and docile. If there was a knock at the front door he would walk casually to the back and we would know we had visitors. He was with us for around 16 years. My sister claimed him as hers so I had little to do with him.
Then I was bitten on two occasions by dogs during home visits. I became wary of them. Still am. So having a dog move into the home was a daunting thought.
My daughter and M moved in. The home is large is enough for M and I to avoid each other, is how I reasoned. She, too, kept her distance. Over time we just seemed to know what the other was feeling. I sensed toilet breaks. She sensed the mood of an empty nester and would tap her tail gently, to let me know she was there. Interestingly the distress of the breakup impacted M too. She became attached to my vacuum cleaner. Where ever I placed the vacuum cleaner, she would lie next to it. I ended giving it to my daughter when they moved out. She also sensed when I was packing for trips and give me a sad look. It started to tear me up. “I’m back in a few days”, I found myself telling her. I felt guilty each time I left home. We had bonded. M is nearly seven. A veteran of a few surgeries and was recovering from one in this picture. She knows not to jump on me and can read my hand signal, stop. Clever girl! She is now comfortable in my home whenever they visit.Then came Em. The Instagram star. She also found herself featured in an Ikea catalogue. Our little celebrity. Hold a mobile phone and Em will immediately get a toy and pose! She was barely a year old in this picture and is now bigger. The first thing I do on the internet each morning, is look at her latest picture. She is my morning smile.The most recent addition to the family is Kovu, my son’s chocolate labrador. Still only a few months old he is a bundle of energy. It makes me smile when the dogs go to the beach on ‘a play date’! I nearly fell off the chair the other day when my son stated he needed to go home as his “son” was waiting for him. This from a hipster twentysomething who claims he and his fiancee are never going to have children!
I don’t have a pet, but dogs are part of my family. How is it possible dogs can fill a home and heart with so much love? I really don’t know. They just do. That’s the power of puppy love. Unconditional. Sensitive. Playful. Loyal. Faithful. We are their world and they mean the world to us. And, that’s enough of an answer for me.
Until next time
a dawn bird