I won’t forget

October 12, 2011

I took for granted your paws clattering across the wood floor. Your wet nose pressed against the window pane and your eyes furtively darting for a glimpse of your family.
Knowing that when I cried, the first one to kindly nudge me would be you; the first to sit with me in sympathy would always be you, saying in the silence that you would be there.
I won’t forget that.
But now you’ve left me.
I know you didn’t want to go.
And even as the end came nearer and nearer, your loyalty never wavered. Your breaths grew staggered, your eyes grew dim, but there you lay, ever aware of your family. And in the final moments, I knew that you were content. Your masters were there; there was nothing more you could want.
How does it feel to lose my best friend?–to listen expectantly for your soft breathing, your barks of protection, your loving whimpers when your masters were near.
Words fail me.
Instead, I’m left with silence. And my thoughts.
Thoughts that meld into memories that right now only bring sorrow. But will one day hold joy and love.
A love so true that it warms my heart, and takes me back to that time. A love so deep that I know it was real.
I won’t forget that.
Humans can love, but I believe that animals love deeper.
Some call it instinct, as if to devalue it.
But at the end of the day, your love was always waiting for me when I came home and pulling at my pant leg when I left in the morning. Your stubby tail wagging so fiercely that your whole back side had no choice but to follow.
I won’t forget that.
In the end, I think I will miss the quiet moments the most. When all three of your masters were together, you lying contentedly in between us, serene and confident that nothing could possibly be better than that moment.
And nothing will be.

Where’d all the People go?

February 18, 2009

Driving around town, I noticed that in every car, behind each passing window, pacing in all back seats were grinning, panting, licking, lovable canines.

I can say with all certainty that I would take a dog over a human any day. They’re eternally happy, loving, non-complaining (unless you count the barking), easy to please. Certainly the most easy-going passenger that will ever grace my automobile.

However, I admit, I never realized how many other people felt the same.

This has been a long time comin for dogs and cats alike. From the farmhouse days of stalking mice in the barn and traipsing through the woods in the evenings with hopes of food and companionship once daylight appears. Dogs and cats have earned and endured their way into our hearts. Nowadays, it’s quite a foreign thought to leave animals outside at night. Almost considered animal abuse, depending on who you talk to.

No, dogs and cats are now formidable members of the human family. Just ask most animal owners. You get them talking about their pet–it won’t be long before you hear phrases like “he prefers to eat when I eat” and “she always sleeps with me.”

What is it about our pets that tug at our heart strings? Is it that they are everything we wish we could be? Or everything we wish we could find in another person? Loyal, caring, unconcerned with faults, good listeners, always in a good mood, always ready to play, never holding grudges. They are that constant companion who greets us at the door. The reliable friend who waits up after a late work night.

What we all wouldn’t give for human companions like that.