Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Older Dogs - the BEST

Boy do I appreciate all my older dogs.  I love them.  I adore them.  They are so awesome!  Denali, 14, a gentle beauty.  Emma-Leigh, 13, enthusiastic and happy, a smart girl.  Kubota, 13, so freaking handsome and always in the mood to hear it and be loved up or lend a shoulder to lean on.  Turbo, 12, 100% teddy bear with the fattest cheeks you ever saw and the most kissable nose, smiles and smiles as we pile on the affection.  Twinkle, 12, beautiful, calm, lovable.  Pearl, 12, a living doll, so pretty and calm...

Contrast with:
Twizzler, 1 year old, insanely happy, constant motion, spastic, wild, affectionate but gives bruises with her kisses.  Impossible to do much more than bear hug her without getting a black eye.  Have to pet  as she streaks by, which she loves.  Still thinks she should lick or mouth my hands.  Can't figure out what to do with her energy as you put a leash on her.  Hasn't figured out that spinning while on a leash causes all those tangles.
Same story with: Pixy, Salt, Leaf and Ash.  All are 1 year olds.

Even some of the others 7 yrs and younger are utterly wild.  Trying to rip my clothes to shreds as I put on harnesses and hook the team up!  Ouch!
Even Java Bean, 1 of the 9 year olds, is a blackened eye danger as he porpoises around while I try to harness him.  He can't wait to be hooked up and lunges powerfully as I walk him to the gangline.

I know your typical pet is not as wild as a husky bred to be a sled dog, but honestly people, do you really want to house break for months on end, get your furniture, socks and shoes chewed up, get your neck adjusted badly on every walk???  NO!  So adopt a 9 year old dog!!!  Even an old sled dog raised outside will be house broken (In my experience) quicker than *any* puppy.  He or she will probably be an amazing walking and hiking companion.  And a totally inspirational being in your life.

I know I know, you all want a whole lifetime with a dog.  You got your heart broken by the last dog you had who died.  You don't want to face death again so soon.

I don't know what to say to all that, it's true, death sucks and breaks our hearts.  Some losses feel like holes in our hearts and lives forever.  But sometimes when we love an old dog, we know every day is precious, and we get to live in moment.  Which is a rare gift.

And there is also something that happens to heart is fortified by all those I have loved even if they are gone.  My love for my friend still feels tangible, my companion still by my side.  I know exactly where my heart is.  It is in the middle of me, wide open.  Wide open.  Isn't that a gift too?

-Miss W
Owner and Musher
Barking Brook Sled Dog Adventures, llc