I have a lot to be thankful for, good family and friends, good health, and a solid middle class life, but since this blog is primarily about dogs, I'm going to share the dogs that have shared my life and a little bit of what I've learned from each of them.
I don't really know where to start, so I guess I'll go in a rough chronological order.
|I'm thankful that she was with me when Bert died.|
She taught me that a second hand dog is second
to none in terms of their loyalty and bond.
|Sasha, my first shepherd, taught me the value of|
having a female shepherd as a second in command.
|Vito taught me that a dog doesn't have to be|
well-behaved to be a great dog. Letting a dog
be a dog, rather than a four legged human, was
a valuable lesson to learn.
|I'm thankful that Jack came into our lives although it happened|
as a result of a tragedy. We lost a dog, Onyx, who escaped when
a gate was left open, teaching me the importance of vigilance.
While searching shelters, we found Jack.
|Jack taught us all about rottweilers, and saved many rotties|
as a result when we began rescue work.
|Gyspy, where do I start? I'm thankful for her fierce loyalty,|
her exclusive devotion to me, and to her job as Chief of Staff.
|She never approved of my rescue work, but damn it, she took|
it upon herself to keep them in line.
|Cabell taught us the beauty of mutts. I'm thankful that he|
was the opposite of Gypsy's personality but was also her best
|I'm thankful for Cabell's sweet, loving personality,|
and his tolerance and patience.
|Bremo, I'm thankful for knowing that he|
never knew hunger, fear, or abandonment.
|I'm thankful that Bremo spent his entire life with us. He may|
have been the ugly duckling of his litter, but he had a beautiful
heart and soul.
|I'm thankful to Zachary for choosing|
Clay over me right from the start and
being loyal to Clay right to the end.
|Although he had nearly every German|
Shepherd medical issue known to science,
I'm thankful that his temperament and
personality made it possible to treat him.
|I'm thankful to Molly for serving as our|
kennel manager for several years. She
would talk to incoming fosters and put
them at ease, reassuring them that we could
be trusted and everything would be all right.
|And I'll be forever thankful to Molly for making it known that|
she wanted to stay with us and for overcoming her fear of all
things indoors and man made to make that possible.
|Emmylou taught us the grace and beauty of senior dogs.|
|Emmylou, with her bright eyes, happy face, and|
her need to talk, taught me how to speak shepherd.
|In his role as my personal|
trainer, Sparky has walked
50 pounds off of me and fixed
my back problems and probably
a number of other health issues.
|I'm thankful to Sparky for teaching me the joy|
of movement, for getting me up off my butt
and out on the trails.
|I'm thankful to Vince and for Vince.|
|Vince teaches us to be selective in our friends|
but to trust fully those few who make the cut.
|I'm thankful to Gigi for her quiet grace and elegance|
amid the chaos that often rules our lives.
|Gigi is my girlfriend and she makes me thankful that I don't|
have a human one.
|Max may or may not be "our" dog,|
but it's looking more likely that he is.
|I'm thankful to Max for not hating me when I've been short|
with him and frustrated by his behavior. Max has taught me
to try to understand, accommodate, and work around that which
can not be understood or fixed.
|Theo the Great. I'm thankful to his prior owners and|
even the breeder who gave this dog a solid foundation
of good genetics and good training.
|I'm thankful that he's not a high strung, neurotic, pain-in-the-|
ass shepherd. It's nice to have a handsome, easy-going dog
that I can show off.
And then there's Maya. My little girl, who, like Gigi, makes me thankful to be gay and not have a human one. Like Vito, she teaches me to let a dog be a dog, and not to expect human behavior from a dog. Like Gypsy and Sasha she teaches me devotion. Like Molly and Trooper she helps with the foster dogs. She is my every dog.
She reminds me constantly that good behavior is only one aspect, maybe a small one, of being a good dog. I'm thankful that she decided to live with us and trust us. I'm thankful for that look she gives me, even if it is manipulative.
|I'm also grateful for and thankful to all the foster dogs who have shared|
a piece of their lives with us. I'm sorry for those we couldn't save.
I'm happy for all those who went on to lead happy lives with a new family.