A warm breeze flowed through the patio of the local book store. A pleasant day to relax and watch the array of people walk and jog through the street. Visitors to the area wore a lanyard that displayed a pass that allowed them entry into some of the restored colonial homes.
College students dressed in their causal wear of flip flops, shorts, tee shirts and tank tops scurry to class with backpacks flapping against their backs.
The locals walked or sat on the benches, sometime they’d sit with their dogs and chat with the people passing by. Before I shot this picture the dog laid on the ground peacefully at his master’s feet. This young pretty jogger came near and the dog quickly sat up. Its eyes locked on the runner, ears perked, tongue hung out, and a grin on his face. If he could speak, he’d probably say, “please! please! let me run with you I can keep up”.
What a disappointment for the dog when she jogged by without notice. His head drooped and he slowly dropped to the ground with his head on his legs, eyelids half closed.
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A month ago (June 23) I wrote a post titled “My dog is a friend and companion” This is an update to that post. My friend and companion, who I knew all his life, 13 years finished the race before me. The last few weeks for him was down-hill. As with most elderly, he’d like to take several naps each day and only get up for some water and when time to eat. When he needed to go out to do his business, it was a slow task for him to walk to the door. In the last two weeks he’d look up to me as if to say I need help to the door. I’d pick him up and stroke his back as I walked with him in my arms to the door. I’d stand there and watch him. His skinny little legs barely kept him standing. When he finished, I’d go out and bring him back in. He’d sit on my lap as I watched television. When it was time for bed, we’d both get up, our stiff and aching joints made both of us move slowly to our bed. This past weekend he couldn’t get up. Earlier in the year we took him to the vet, tests showed a high elevated liver count. The vet said it could be cancer and at his age it would only be a matter of time. I took him back to the Vet hospital on Monday. The vet examined him and said it is best he be euthanized. He wasn’t in pain, but he lost all his strength and energy and lost half of his normal weight. I thank God for these 13 years we had together. Our dog, Leo, gave me and my wife unconditional love. Leo was a pet who was raised and trained with unconditional love also.
During my seven decades plus, I had to see two of my pets pass on. I said “I can’t do this again”. But I lied to myself. At my elderly age I still wanted a dog. A dog that would out live me. I figured out my average life span and looked for a dog whose dog life would be a little longer than mine. I took in all factors other than accidental death. Thirteen years ago I got a toy poodle pup. I was still frisky and active, as was he. We have grown old together. I relate to his aching muscles, sore joints and frequent naps. We no longer take those youthful long playful walks. Our stride is short and somewhat staggering. Now we slowly creep through life. I lost a few teeth as he also, I have sagging skin, his no longer has that youthful tone. My hair is grey as his once jet black is now a dull grey. Each day he weakens. I feel I may see my friend and companion go before me. If so, its been an elderly pleasure to age together.
My wife and I were dog sitting. Our friend, in the military, got orders for a six-month deployment and we promised to watch Sebastian. Sebastian is a six-year-old lhasa apso.
One morning my wife left Sebastian out in the yard to do his morning routine. After 5 minutes, she opened the door and called for Sebastian. No Sebastian, my wife was worried, thoughts came to her mind; how will I explain this to Sebastian’s master that he had run away. She clapped her hands and kept calling his name. Finally, his little white hair body appeared from the neighbors yard, his tail tucked between his legs and his little pug face bowed to the ground.
With one hand on her hip and the other hand pointing a finger at him. My wife cried out to Sebastian “You better get in this house. Just what have got to say for yourself”? Sebastian slowly lifted up his head, his big round black eyes looked at my wife. At that point, she knew what Sebastian would say:
I am sorry about this morning. I know you were very worried and upset. I don’t know what happened to me. The morning was clear and crisp. I was so focused on the birds singing it just put me in a playful mood. The air was finally fit to breathe. I could smell things from a greater distance. There was this scent filtering through the air that lifted me right off my feet. I could feel myself being carried off to a far away place. I know you know that feeling. I have seen you focus on a TV show or read a book. You don’t hear anything around you. That was how it was with me. Then I heard hands clapping and my name being called. I looked around. I was really scared nothing looked familiar. I knew your voice. I ran towards the sound then it stopped. I didn’t know which way to turn. I was so scared I pee’d on some pretty flowers. Finally, I smelled something familiar and I followed the scent and it led me home. I was so excited when I saw you, but I knew the tone in your voice I was in a lot of trouble. I hope you will forgive me. I know I will be punished and I deserve it. Thank you for your love for me.
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