Our pets are family, too

Kids Count

While my daughter was growing up we had two golden retrievers at home, Jazz and Rooney. Jazz was always calm and wise even as a puppy. Jazz never chewed things or acted in those wild puppy ways, that was Rooney. So great was his zeal for chewing that upon returning home one day when Rooney was a puppy, he had chewed a hole through a pumpkin pine door that was original to my old house big enough to get his head through.

Many shoes fell prey to his penchant for chewing. Sadly, Rooney had cancer and at five years old he died. It was a sad day for us and my daughter learned something about grieving during this period as she loved Rooney as we all did. Our cherished pets leave us and it helps us to realize how important every day is with our loved ones human or pet.

Our pets also provide many smiles, cute pictures and laughter as they express their individual personalities within our families. Jazz, a golden retriever and water dog, cannot swim, when first we saw her flailing wildly in the water, it both a humorous and curious site. Jazz never goes into water above her chest.

Our pets teach us that getting old does not diminish your value and in fact, age makes you more important. My old dog Jazz has trouble getting up sometimes now; still, whenever my wife or I come home, she greets us with an excited body shaking welcome. Jazz has those brown, sad and wise eyes. Sometimes she sits near me and near my wood stove and if I don’t pet her in short order she looks right at me and barks as if to say, pet me. Then she moves her paw up and down, not to shake hands but rather to say, notice me please.

Reach the writer at Hurlburt@wildblue.net

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