Shiloh is on the left. Cricket is on the right.
I am a crazy dog person. I admit I have a problem. It is a problem I fully accept and will do nothing to change.
These two run my life. Very few people know what my furniture looks like without something covering it. Dog hair is on every piece of fabric in my house and I often stumble over dog toys as I move from room to room.
My dogs ride with me in the car whenever weather and schedules allow. I roll down the back windows in the winter time so they can put their heads out and enjoy the fresh air. Fur floats freely throughout the vehicle refusing to be contained even after the fur bearing beasts are back in the house. Leaving signs of ownership, the back windows display masterpieces they create with nose prints and slobber marks.
They are expensive, loud, inconvenient, demanding, limiting and dirty. So why does this insanity continue?
This morning I woke up, saw it was light outside and glanced at the clock. Ah, two more hours of sleep before I need to get up. After being in one position for several hours, it would be helpful to move around a bit to get more restful sleep for the next two hours. Is it worth the risk to show signs of stirring? Feeling stiffness in my shoulder and numbness in my arm, I slowly roll over to the side of the bed and glance at the floor. “Oh, good, Shiloh must be in the living room.” Carefully, I move myself into a comfortable position and settle in for more sleep. Cricket, seamlessly moves with me, continuing to snore through the process. She pushes herself toward me resting her head on my leg and offers a loud snort, as if to reprimand me for moving her. At least she settled back in. Whew, it was worth the risk of moving.
Within 30 seconds, I hear the sound. It is a cross between a cry, whine and whimper. “Hi, baby boy.” I say as I reach over to pet Shiloh’s head and scratch his neck. The sound is now accompanied by a wagging tail, attentive ears, a bright toothy smile, breathy pants and a look of love uniquely his. Busted! Now, I know I have to get up and let him out.
As I make my way to the patio door, trying not step on dog toys or wake myself up more than necessary, I say, “Come on, Baby Girl. You are going outside, too.” Cricket dutifully runs down the hall and out the door with Shiloh.
After they come back in the house, I walk back down the hall to the bedroom to try to go back to sleep. I get into bed and Cricket quickly follows, finding her spot. Then it happens. Shiloh jumps up on the bed, over Cricket and around to my other side. He crawls up the side of me, puts his sweet head on my shoulder, snuggles in as close as he can get and mumbles sounds of contentment. Cricket then snuggles in a bit tighter, sighs and begins to snore. Feeling the warm loving presence of my two canine companions on each side of me, I soak in the reward. Ah, a Mommy sandwich. We all fall back asleep and all seems right in my world for another hour.
Feelings of loneliness, grief, uncertainty, sadness and fear are all soothed when I am surrounded by puppy love.
This is why I have dogs.
It’s a great year.