George Carlin said “Life is a series of dogs” and I believe it! There’s just something about a pet that can complete a family or settle a family into their surroundings. At least it seems to be that way for us.
We were moving into our first home and passed a large “FREE PUPPIES” sign while we were en route. We weren’t in that brand new, freshly-built house a whole day before we had little Griffen tumbling down the stairs. He quickly outgrew our teeny subdivision house and postage stamp-sized lot as we discovered he was part Irish Wolfhound. After he put a few dents in the drywall, chewed up a couch and destroyed a down comforter we found a farmer and we parted ways with Griffin. (I lost all my pictures of him when my camera was stolen a few years ago unfortunately)
About four years passed and a few weeks after we got married we found the sweetest short-haired sheltie. We named him Seamus O’Puppy. What a great guy! He went on road trips with us, cuddled at our feet and we loved him. He raised the bar for all dogs. He was great to Belle and was very gentle with The Little Dude when he was a newborn.
When TLD was about 8 weeks old, we realized he was allergic to Seamus. Our baby couldn’t breathe whenever Seamus was around. We’d just sold the house, were getting ready to move into an apartment, Belle was a toddler and TLD was a wheezing infant- that was a crazy time. I knew my brother loved Seamus so we found someone to foster him till he could claim him. Now, a year and a few foster families later, Seamus and my brother are together and very happy.
It was going to happen sometime, I suppose. With this property and the allergy gone there was nothing stopping us. We wanted a dog. Considering the coyotes and the size of our property a smaller dog wasn’t what we wanted. We wanted a german shepherd.
I found a listing for a rescued “Ramsey” and made a call. He had been a stray and this rescue lady a few counties away had saved him from a pound in Kentucky the day he was going to be destroyed. She took him home, to where she fosters siberian huskies and german shepherds. She found him to be great with her kids and housebroken. At that I knew he was my dog.
“Ramsey” was what the rescue lady named him while she was watching a Gordon Ramsey program. He wasn’t attached to the name so we went with 15 month-old TLD’s suggestion: BEAR.
OK, so he’s big. Really big. 62 pounds big and could double in weight when he’s done growing. And he’s young. A trainer said “just think of him as a four legged 16 year-old”. Terrific. But he is surprisingly gentle with the kids. He must be “thinking small” or something because he hardly nudges them when he can barrel into me and Babe. He’s loving and he’s beautiful.
A few days ago I said in an entry that we were going to give him back to the rescue lady. Here’s why: he runs away constantly. Just like Chevy Chase’s first dog in Funny Farm, this guy will bolt after any bunny or bird, any distraction. It’s hard to love a dog that will skulk off the moment you turn your gaze.
But we do love him.
So now I’m calling dog trainers, invisible fence people and looking at obedience books, all while a giant Bear lays at my feet.