Monday, June 21, 2010

For the Dogs

Ever since I started reading The Art of Racing in the Rain (a story told from a dog’s perspective) I’ve noticed I’ve been extra kind to our Samoyed. A tribute to anthropomorphism at its finest. But honestly, anyone trying to claim animals lack feelings needed to watch the show on Animal Planet on Mother’s Day about a lemur having to leave its baby behind. The ring-tailed lemur came back to check on the baby multiple times. Needless to say the special made me cry.

Anyway, we’ve had our dog, Korah for eleven years. She’s kept us entertained with her cat-like antics, hopping upon chew toys with a feline pounce. She’s added fragrance to our lives when she managed to get sprayed between the eyes by neighborhood skunks three times. And we’ve had the fine delight of discerning her diet. And like Marley from Marley & Me…she produces treasures. Unlike that lovable book (and dog) I wish I could celebrate a necklace or two she’s digested fully, but our finds include things of the less, shall we say shiny variety. Hot pink Polly Pocket pants. Baby wipes fully intact and other non-identifiable objects.

Last week many of you heard about my excursion to the doctor’s office because my youngest shoved a round Lego piece high to the heavens inside her nostril (surely she was aiming for the brain). Our wonderful grandfatherly neighbor (and when I say wonderful I truly mean it. We actually have our children call these neighbors Grandma and Grandpa J) came to inform me our sweet eleven-year-old white snowball (often compared to a polar bear) left a present in their yard to clean up. And like a good neighbor, I cleaned what needed cleaning, then preceded to take my youngest to dislodge the Lego. I lead such a glamorous life, eh?

So all this to say what? My affection for our dog runs deep. She’s been there for me in some Marley & Me moments before. I’ve had good cries lying next to her, letting her lick my hand after I’ve wiped away tears. Anything for salt. They’ll do anything for salt.

But seriously, I could not ask for a better dog. Eye allergies cause brownish-black scythe shapes to drip out of her eyes—very noticeable against her blanket of white fur (even her eyelashes are white…how cool is that?). A friend used to tease me she thought Korah looks like the lead singer from KISS. I don’t see it.

I don’t see it because when I look at her I see the compilation of all the times she’s been a faithful friend to me. I see her sniffing each of the three baby caps we brought home from the hospital and her peeing the same night to remind us of her territory. I see her drowned in tomato juice when I attempted to get out the skunk smell. I see her raspberry tongue and her wagging curled gigantic squirrel tail. I see a dog that’s endured six moves, three children and our waning energies to walk her as she should be walked.

I see our sixth family member. No wonder a book told from a dog’s perspective instigates me to lavish more love on our dog. It’s about time. And you wonder who bought the book for me?

Are you a dog person like me?

As a strange side note: the day I wrote this post we returned from the grocery store to find Marley & Me on our sunroom table. For the life of me I can’t remember who I’d lent it to, but it had been returned. And you wonder who got Marley & Me down off the shelf and put it on the sunroom table while we were gone? ;)


  1. I think your dog is beautiful! We used to have a part samoya and part terrier for years and I swear she knew my feelings all the time.

  2. Not like you, though I do feel a deep affection for my pets! I had a childhood dog who I really, really loved.
    Beautiful post, Wendy!

  3. TAORITR is one of my favorite books, and I'm most definitely a dog person. And I'm sad over that fact, because we have problems with our dog. I just want a normal dog.

  4. Neat about your Marley. I have goosebumps now. My childhood dog licked many of my teenage angst tears. I'm away too much to have a dog, but love what you have written hear about yours. It opened my heart.

  5. WITH ALL MY HEART! I cannot even accurately count how many dogs we've had in our lifetime.
    You and I, Wendy, could tell dog stories ALL DAY.

    Have you read, Beautiful Joe? YOu HAVE TO if you haven't.

    Plus...Lord willing, I am going with my best friend (also a doggie) to the Monks of SKete's dog training facility next October!!!!!

    Fabulous post and thanks for giving me the name of a new book to buy.


  6. Korah is beautiful, and so is your entry. I've watched Marley and Me recently. Maybe it's time to take My Dog Skip out of the DVD cabinet. It's one of my favorites.

  7. This post made me laugh and sigh and then laugh again. My little poodle is so precious to me. Talk about unconditional love...

  8. Such a pretty dog. We have two labs. I love them to pieces - except when they dig :)

  9. So sad I am allergic! But my daughter would gladly give up an appendage for a dog! :)

    I tried emailing you about Mt.Hermon- would love to tell you all about it, but it did not go through. My email is if you still would like to connect!

  10. We have a cat. He spends most of his time outdoors. I like having a cat because he is so independent. We can go away for a few days on a whim and not have to worry about him. All of our neighbours have lovely dogs that my kids are allowed to visit with and take on walks. We get the joys of doggie-loving without having to have poop in the yard. Works for me. I just love pets in general.

  11. This weekend I got to hold an Augie...Australian shepherd/Corgi cross...puppy named Mabel. It brought back lots of memories of the bird-dog puppies my dad raised when I was a kid.

    I've got a cat right now that I love to pieces, even though she can be a pain and a trial at times. :)

  12. I'm going against popular opinion. I'm not a dog person or a pet person for that matter, although my daughter begs me for a dog every day.

  13. Dog person! I have two. A golden and a pekaneise. (sp?) My Golden will be eleven this October ack! I'm getting nervous about his health. He gets into the darnest things.

  14. Yes! Yes! Yes! I am a dog woman to the core!

    When I was eight I was given my very own dog. A little white fluff ball from the pound. He was my best friend. He moved with me to three different states and one foreign country. He was pushed down the chain of importance with the birth of my two children, and still stayed by my side. He was a loyal companion till the end.

    At 23 years old, he finally let go of me and died in my arms.

    So, yes, I am very much a dog lover. :)

    BTW, love your picture.

  15. What a sweet post. I'm definitely a dog person--our springer spaniel was always there for me when I needed comfort. She liked to follow me around the house everywhere and snuggle at my feet. She's the BEST doggie, but she stays with my sister now.

    Want to know the story? Well, my sister watched Sophie for us one time when we were out of town. She has a cute pup herself (we both got our dogs close to the same time). I guess her dog became the best of friends with Sophie because when we came back to collect Sophie, my sister's dog was sad when she left. She'd stand by the door waiting for Sophie to come back and she'd whine and she wouldn't eat at all. Nothing. So, we brought Sophie back to her and my sister's dog went back to normal :) It worked out because we were about ready to move. But sometimes I still miss having Sophie around for company.

  16. What a beautiful dog! Thank you for sharing your thoughts about your family's companion.
    Karen :)

  17. Dog person here, from the get-go! What a sweetie you have. Hopefully the errant lego was dislodged!

  18. Oh my yes!! I'm such a dog person. I love our Bubba. He brings me so much laughter. And there's nothing sweeter than seeing Brogan wrestle around with him and fall into a fit of giggles because Bubba's being his silly old self.

  19. Oh, what a cute dog!

    I'm more of a cat person because they're low maintenance. Someday, I'll write about Sarah and Abraham (cute huh?). What a pair they were!

  20. I love dogs. I have a chihuahua called... wait for it... LION! I love her :)

  21. Ah, what a sweet post, Wendy! And no I didn't hear about your daughter's lego incident! EEEK! I just recently watched Hatchi, based on a true tale. Holy Moly. I literally bawled during the last quarter of the movie. Two of my daughters did too. We were the weeping women. But the movie really brings out the loyalty of dogs and how faithful they are to their people.

    And you're right. It does make us lavish a little more love on our dogs! Until they start chasing the baby squirrel we've raised and let go in our backyard. Then they're "bad dog." Not that that's ever happened. Just hypothetical. ;-)

  22. what a cutie. and the streaks, oddly enough, make her look kind of cheetah-ish.

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