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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Our best friends - By Bruce

Most often I write about our lifestyle here in the mountains. Something a friend wrote on her blog site, spoke to me and I thought I would post excerpts from what Barbara Galasso wrote. Our dogs are a very large part of our lives either here in the mountains or where ever we may live.

Here is what Barbara had to say about dogs and how they impact us: (posted with permission)

People that are not “in the know” question us who love our dogs like they are part of the family……..they think we have a tendency to “humanize” them too much. How can they even question or comment about the relationship that man has with his dog when they have never known this special “unlike any other love” that we dog owners are privileged to share? They are right in one way. Dogs are not human. And that in itself makes them so special. They have truly been blessed with having the biggest of hearts filled with an undying love for his master. They love blindly, unselfishly, and with the purest of all loves that man could ever hope to have. Truly not to know what it feels like to have the love from a dog, man is depriving himself of the most perfect love that God has sent to us!

The dog says so much without ever uttering a word. I once read somewhere that love is a verb… action. And so indeed with the dog it truly is. For he cannot tell us how he feels like some empty words a person may whisper in your ear while deceiving you behind your back. He is constantly showing us how he feels. He can’t tell you “I love you” so he must show you that he loves you. He must be demonstrative in order for him to convey that his love is true. So truly the old saying, “actions speak louder than words” was indeed written for the dog because his actions are his unspoken words!

Sharing your life with a dog can only enrich it. There is so much to learn from these marvelous animals. They are only here for a short time and have only been sent to us for one reason and that I believe is to teach us how to love. Every single one of them is a gift and if we never open that gift because we left him in a kennel or tied him up to a tree, then I believe we have insulted the sender of that package of fur. How many of us are wealthy enough to throw away love? It is there for our taking if we open up our hearts for it.

Dogs know how to make a fool of themselves and never make an apology for it. They know how to have fun and play without asking our permission to do it. They know how to enjoy life. They are ever playful no matter what age they are. They invite us to be a kid again! They truly have a “forget your troubles, come on get happy” type of attitude. They truly don’t take life too seriously. Aren’t they lucky that they don’t know how to worry? They are sent to us to be a distraction from worry. They remind us it’s alright to let our inhibitions down and to let loose once in awhile.

Every time that an animal is destroyed in a shelter, every time an animal dies at the hands of his abuser, every time he is left to starve, we have prevented love from being on this earth. The more we destroy love, the more the doors are open for hate, evil and injustice. No time in recent history is this earth in need of more love. Will owning a dog change the world? Maybe not over night, but I bet that a dog can soften some of the hardest of hearts. Not all can be reached, but some just need to know what it feels like receiving the purest form of love with no expectations. I may be philosophical here, but love is really the most basic of needs that man has besides food, water and shelter. Not everyone will meet that love of their life, but it doesn’t mean that they can’t experience what it feels like to know love. Dog’s primary purpose on this earth is to be with man. If man keeps destroying the very thing that he most needs in a corrupt world, then pretty soon there won’t be anymore love to go around. Dogs are love!

I believe that Barbara has expounded upon a basic and vital truth in her observations. Our three dogs are a vital part of our life, we make decisions around them. We spoil them miserably and love doing it as much as they love to be spoiled. As Gypsy has grown older she may have slowed down but she hasn't slowed down on giving love. We adjust our lives to make sure her twilight years are as full and comfortable for her as possible. Bozwell and Sarah are equally good caregivers for her and all demonstrate each of the qualities that Barbara writes about so well.

Something we thought was well worth sharing...


Deirdre said...

Bravo and double ditto!
Deirdre and Sugar

Pat said...

How timely… My dear friend and neighbor Sherry had to put Gabby down this week. Gabby was a 12-year-old yellow lab love of an old girl. If you think of every quality you would want in a dog, that was Gabby. Sherry would step out her front door, say, “Let’s go see Pat!” and Gabby would run up the road, down my driveway and sit on my front porch until Sherry got here. Many times I’d look out on my porch and see a patch of yellow fur, and know that Sherry was not far behind. I’m convinced Gabby loved me almost as much as her family. She’s one of the ones who would come up to me and sit on my feet. Or put her head in my lap. Or be touching me in some way. Gabby loved to come in the house and roam, as if to just want to know that where I was, was okay. I adored Gabby. The family’s heart is broken, but so is mine.

Sherry will love reading your meesage, although it will no doubt start up a new batch of sobbing.

I foresee a yellow lab puppy having a new home for Christmas. Sherry wants to get a puppy so her old black lab, Jenna, can teach the new puppy the right way to be a dog, as that seems to be one of the things Jenna does best. And then there’s her huge white great Pyreneese, Belle, who also adores me.

Jenna, by the way, loves to run off, and she will not come back until she’s ready, even if Sherry calls her. One of my first encounters with Sherry was a day Jenna had run off up the hill and wouldn’t come back for Sherry. So I stood in my front yard, and danced around like a fool, calling, “Come on, Jenna!!! Let’s GO, Jenna. Go for a ride, Jenna!” And Jenna just couldn’t resist… She came running, like, “Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!” So now, if Jenna decides to test her freedom, Sherry calls me, and I go out and dance around like a fool – works every time.

Much love to you both…

Bruce said...

Hope this doesn't start a new bout of sobbing for Sherry. I have been there and it is just a terrible feeling and one not easily - if ever- gotten over. I was talking to an applicant the other day who wants to adopt a rescue German Shepherd. Her past dog was named Ben, the same as our's was named Ben. Both are now gone and ours has been over three years. We got to talking about our Ben's and we both got to crying and the interview went right straight down the dumper.
I think that Barbara captured the heart of having a dog for your best friend. It is the best analysis I have seen.
Another dog does not take the place of the one you lost. They have their own personality and character. In many ways they are better but while they have all the qualities there will always be that hole in your heart no other dog can replace. In fact when these are gone they will leave a huge hole right there too.
As long as I have a mind I will never forget or stop missing those very special best friends.