Thursday, December 9, 2010

Life with a Dog

I don't think you have truly experienced all that life has to offer until you have had your own dog. Every moment in a dog's life spent with humans who love him is a joy. (Other than the moments when you are cleaning up the messes, trying to wrestle a stick of butter, a mitten or a favorite toy out of his mouth.) The children have fallen head over heels in love with him, of course, and do all they can to make Jasper's life nicer.

Our darling dog has brought out empathy, care and concern for the feelings of another being the way no one else ever has. I think this is especially true of a rescued dog, since we know he was found on the street, abandoned and sad before he came to live with us. The children watched the shelter's volunteer groomer trim him as he stood shaking on the table, they heard that he had been full of burrs and had to be shaved when he was found. They saw how he barked and barked when he was penned up in a cage, but perfectly quiet and playful as soon as he was let out.

Then they heard from the trainer we are working with, how he could tell Jasper had been abused since he flinched when a hand came near his face, and the reason for his aggressiveness where food was concerned; he had been on the streets and starving. This broke everyone's heart and made us all even more gentle and kind towards him. If you haven't tried a dog for loyal, unconditional companionship in your family, you might want to give it some thought. If you need a project for educational purposes, you should consider a dog, if you are ready for one. There are so many wonderful dogs filling the cold metal cages of shelters all over the world. The kids have listened for years about the pros and cons of owning a dog (me pros, my husband cons), researched every breed you can imagine, settled on a non-allergenic dog that would work for us, and visited almost every shelter in the area searching for the right furry friend for us. Now they are learning the hows and whys of pet training and care and how to dog-proof a home and be careful with their favorite possessions.

We have watched him grow from a nervous, slightly hyper creature into a calm, stable loving one, happy with playing fetch, happy being brushed and fed, and happy just to lie at your feet and be with you.That's the nicest part about a dog, they ask nothing more in life than to be yours, and they give so much in return.


  1. Oh Angela, I am so thrilled to read this beautiful and heartfelt post! Bless you for adopting Jasper. He's darling! And I'm not surprised that you take the educational slant, which is fantastic, as well. By bringing your little ones into everything as you have done, you have awakened their knowledge of unconditional love of a furbaby and they will treat not only Jasper, but all other animals with kindness and compassion. I am so glad you saw through the barking in the shelter and allowed him to blossom in your loving home. The shelter is such a scary place for them and the fact that you took one that had it so rough and was abused and you are wisely working with a trainer - you're just doing everything so perfectly! Congrats on your new family member and thank you for sharing this.

    If you'd like me to make you something special from my shop, I'm happy to do so! I'm closing it for the holidays today, but you can look through the sold sections. I've also just made a king winter that is darling - maybe I'll post a picture on my blog. No pressure, but I'd love to send you a gift of thanks - not only for rescuing Jasper from the shelter and showering him with love, but also for blogging about it and encouraging others to do the same! We can end this misery for so many if we all unite to put a stop to pet shops, puppy mills and backyard breeders!

  2. Oh my goodness...what a beautiful dog and story. This just warms my heart. ♥

  3. Wonderful to read this. How does Papa feel about le chien now?

    BTW, the Word Verification Code for my comment here is 'messes' very apropos don't you think?


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