Friday, December 19, 2008

Through the darkness

On Oct. 21, 2008 I lost a true champion of 14 years, Otis. He was a cross of Australian Shepard , Rotie and Lab. At first I resisted the relationship with Otis. He was a gift to my daughter when she was 12. As a puppy he was high energy, sharply intelligent, creative and compassionate.

My daughter soon learned that the relationship with an animal is a large responsibility and one day came to my room stating "I am a irresponsible teenager and I can't handle the responsibility of a dog and I won't become a teen mom either". I got a two for the price of one; a great dog and a kid who learned what a large responsibility it is to care for the life of another being.

Two years later we added Peaches who was a one and a half year old Rotie to the pack. She was the care taker of the collective pack. Over the next eight years as my children grew older and away from home I spent many wonderful trips into the mountains backpacking with these wonderful friends.

Three years ago I inherited Max after my brother passed. Max has had a hard time accepting the loss of his person. Though Max is a sweet dog his alliance still is with my brother.

My first lost was of Peaches who died when she was 10. Life for all of us was slowing down. I was becoming lost in work, the kids had started their own families. Otis didn't look any older and still hadn't lost his joy but was slowing down. At 14 and about a month before he pasted he began to lose control of his back legs. His spirit was still strong and it was painful when on Oct. 21, 2008 he was no longer able to stand up, yet when I came home that day after my daughter called stating he couldn't get up, he dragged himself across the house to greet me with his big smile.

After he passed I decided I needed to wait,complete my grieving process and not jump into a new relationship with animal. Living without a companion animal has been very painful and lonely. Then on Thanksgiving day Katie moved in with me. She is a beautiful, sweet, smart and well tempered German Shepard.She was a dog my son and his wife had gotten last year before they relocated and could not find a place were Katie could be. The only draw back is they had bred her. So by the end of Dec. she will be birthing.

Although I wasn't planning on get a new dog so soon it is amazing how soon I fell in love.