Almost 20 years ago, I petted Stella, Bro2's roommate's nasty little Jack Russell Terrier. "This dog is pregnant", I said. "No, no", Bro replied. Never mind he had an unfixed dog in his apartment as his humanitarian effort to help the overcrowded dog pound and Stella wasn't spayed. Bro laughed at the thought they could even get it together since Stella was tiny and the pound dog was enormous.
Really, when are people going to start believing me when I say stuff? About a month later, Bro confirmed Stella's pregnancy and begged me to take a coming puppy. I had an old Dalmatian and didn't want one, but gave Bro a chance. I typed 2 single-spaced pages of requirements and said if a puppy was born that fit all of these needs I'd take it.
I was very specific. I'd had years of b/w spotty dogs so I wanted a brown dog with a long tail, floppy ears, black nose, female, small like Stella, but with the pound dog's nice personality. I knew the puppies would be Pisces and demanded one with an Aries ascendant so it would be able to stand up to my grouchy, old Dalmatian. I wanted a good bark for security reasons. On and on and on. I wasn't trying to be reasonable. I didn't really want a puppy, but I got one anyway. She was too young to leave Stella too, just 4 weeks old, but Bro was in the Navy and got shipped to Bahrain so I had to take her.
Since she was so young, I paper trained her. That's a helpful skill for a dog to have anyway since it gives an option if I'm away from the house too long. I've never had any trouble training puppies, but this was the stupidest puppy ever. Little turds were dropped just off the paper. Little puddles on my wood floor. I'll admit, I lost my patience and screamed about this after a few months. No puppy should take that long to train. Then, I caught my evil Dalmatian dropping puppy-sized poops on my floor, just missing the paper. At least then my screaming was at the right culprit. It's my everlasting shame that I yelled at my puppy for something she didn't do. I apologized many times about that. The Dal quit messing the house once she was busted.
My puppy was a devoted little dog. Once, I went swimming in Lake Erie with a couple of friends. We left all of our dogs on the deserted beach. The other dogs ran around the beach like dogs do, but my tiny puppy swam out to me through the pre-storm choppy waves. I was pretty far out and didn't see her at first. I swam as fast as I could to rescue her. She was exhausted and lay quietly in my arms as I used my old life saving skills to get her back to the beach. I promised I'd never leave her on the beach again.
She managed my schedule and told me when to eat, when to work, when to watch TV. She kept the groundhogs and rabbits under control until she got too old to chase them. She daintily walked around my art piles on the floor. She happily went on my de-littering walks in the neighborhood and did some pretty serious hiking with me through the years. She was always sweet.
The first thing I do every day is fill her food and water bowls. Today, they weren't there to fill. I didn't know how to start my day. I forgot to eat supper last night and almost forgot to brush my teeth. I keep expecting to see her under my feet. I'm lost and sad because my roommate of almost 20 years is gone. I held her as she died and she wagged her long tail. I sang her our song, "I love my dog, I love my dog, and my dog loves me!"
Some people don't understand how tight we get with our furry friends, or see why we'd want to care for another who will always be dependent like a child. One person told me to quit having dogs since my heart breaks when they die. People like that can't feel the love and companionship my puppy gave me through the years. It's worth today's loss, though I'll miss her more than I can say. I hope she's there to meet me when it's my turn to go to the other side.
|She did have floppy ears except when there were varmints in|
the yard or I was taking pictures of her.
The art above is an old doodle from when she was young and perky. It doesn't have anything to do with a cabin other than taking her camping, but then IF is still falling behind on Friday words.