It has been said that dogs are man's best friend. Being the master of two baby dogs, I would have to agree with that thought. If ever man had a best friend, it would in fact be a dog as they are loyal to the end, love you unconditionally, and are always happy to see you when you come home. Even when they do not feel good, they will wag that tail and let you know that you are their number one.
The fact that dogs are man's best friend was brought to focus this past week when a service dog, lay in watch over his master's coffin. Former President George W.H Bush's dog, Sully, a beautiful yellow Labrador, was caught on camera during his recent watch and then later when he paid his last respects to his master of six months. Reportedly, Sully was acquired after the former president's wife, Barbara, passed away earlier this year. Sully was trained to be a companion to help fill the void left by Mrs. Bush. One of his commands was the rest command in which he would lay his head on the leg of his master.
While Sully may have been President Bush's trained companion, trained specifically to provide companionship for him, there are millions of dogs who are not trained to fulfill that role but do so just by their nature as a creature of God. Sully's training may have enhanced his role as a companion, but I bet the old dog would have made a more than acceptable companion even if he had never been trained. That is just their nature.
As I stated, I have two "baby dogs". I refer to them as baby dogs not because they are merely 4 and 8 pounds, but rather because they are babies who have and will never grow up. Even as a matured dog, they depend on me for their food, water, health needs, and a warm/cool place to lay their heads. Of course the most important responsibility I have for them is to show them how much I love them every day and in every way. We play, we sleep, we even talk. When a bad storm comes, I am the one to whom they look for comfort. They look to me to ensure they are not eaten up with fleas and do not get sick from heart worms. Yes, I am their provider but at the same time they provide me with so much more.
I have had dogs the majority of my life, beginning with Chocolate, my little bitty Chiluahua. My parents purchased him for me because they had heard the little breed of a dog would "catch" asthma, assisting in controlling that affliction of its master. That was the thing to do back in the early 50's. And, since my parents were desperate to find a cure for my asthma, they bought Chocolate. I don't think he was more than 3 or 4 pounds worth of a dog, but he sure was fierce.
Even though Chocolate and I were big buds, he still had to protect himself because he was so small. So, as he slept in my bed with me he had to be on guard to prevent me from rolling over on him. Well, apparently one night I got too close to doing just that and he bit me on the nose. I was so young I do not really remember this incident, but I have been told about it over the years. And, knowing how I feel about dogs now, I am sure that Chocolate's protectiveness of himself didn't interfere with our love for one another.
I don't remember what happened to Chocolate. He probably got run over by a car. But, he was a good dog and, I am told, he did fulfill his responsibility of catching my asthma, strange as that might seem.
While Chocolate was my first dog, I've had several others over the years. There was Twister, PD (Preacher's Dog), Shana, Bisket, and Jake. My husband and I had Bisket and Jake while we were married and we spoiled those dogs rotten. Bisket lived until she was nearly 19 years old, so parting with her was very traumatic for us both. I lost Jake in the divorce, but have learned he passed from cancer a few years ago. Yep, we loved those two dogs so very much.
At the present time I have Winston and Clementine. Winston is a Morkie, a Maltese/Yorkie mix, and Clementine is a Brussel's Griffon. They are tiny but full of so much love for me. When I am home they do everything with me. When I am not at home, they await for my return so they can do whatever I am going to do all over again with me!
I suppose when Winston and Clementine pass I will not get another dog, or pet for that matter. I think the responsibility in my old age would be too much. It will be a big adjustment, but I just don't want to not be able to take care of one.
Getting back to Sully, I feel sorry for the baby dog but I am sure a new home will be found for him. Who wouldn't want to have the service dog of a former President of the United States? Yep, Sully will be alright.
As I close this blog entry I would also like to take note of the thousands upon thousands of dogs who are homeless. Think about giving one a good home. But, before you do, remember it is a life long commitment, not just a Christmas present that can be taken back.
Until next time...