Deep Thoughts

Photo by Angela Kirk

Photo by Angela Kirk

There has been a lot of excitement this summer especially with my 5th birthday, family vacation, swimming and all the outdoor concerts and activities Doc has taken me to. As we get into the last half of summer, I thought I should take a moment to settle down and reflect on what is going on in my world as all the fun can be distracting. Besides, a little introspection never hurt anyone.

Now I know what you’re thinking, what’s a dog got to be introspective about? Well you just might be surprised. When you think we are napping, we are actually thinking deep thoughts and most of them are about the humans that we live with. Part of the reason we chose to live with you (yes, we chose you), is to help you out in your lives. So even though part of our nature is to get you to have fun, our job is to also watch out for you. A kind of a guardian dog if you will.

For instance, part of my job with Doc is to make sure she has the right balance in her life and I do that by not only helping her at work, but bringing the ball and dropping it by her feet so she will get up to play and have some fun. As I observe what she needs I come up with a plan and get her to engage in it. Now don’t get freaked out, we aren’t using mind control, just good old observations skills.

You may then ask, “Why does my dog act out sometimes, that’s not helpful?” Oh but it is my faithful human. Those are just more messages to you about what you need to change in your life. When you don’t get the first hints from us we take more drastic measures to get your attention. Chewing up  your favorite shoes? Just letting you know they are ugly and out of style and we don’t want to see them on your feet again. Peeing on the wall? My way of telling you it’s time to update that horrid paint color from the 90’s. After all I have to live here too. Well, you get the idea.

You must be surprised that we take such an interest in everything, but remember we have to co-exist with you. That means having to put up with all your moods, decor choices, your nasty habits and some of the strange outfits you want us to wear. So the next time you see your dog sleeping, think again.

groverpic “He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.”

— Immanuel Kant

Happy Fifth Birthday Grover!

DSC_4551Every year on my birthday Doc gives me the day off from writing my blog and she is nice enough to do it for me. This year she wrote me this sweet letter that I would like to share with you.


Dear Grover,

With each day and year that has passed, I continue to be amazed at the many gifts you have brought into my life. My intention from the first day I brought you home from the farm as a 9 week old puppy was to raise you to be the best therapy dog ever. I knew I was only human and needed the help of a dog that loves unconditionally to help me reach the people that cross my path. You have succeeded my expectations. You easily draw people in and put them at ease with your sweet and goofy nature and your willingness to comfort anyone that needs you.

Sometimes that includes me. I didn’t expect that because I am suppose to be the healer, but you have reminded me that sometimes I need healing as well.  You have stayed next to me and watched over me during illness, family tragedy or when I was just having a bad day. Luckily most of the days have been good and I find great joy in the many life adventures we share together. Life is never boring when you are around.

I think people are so drawn to dogs like you because not only do you love unconditionally, but you remind us that life is really more simple than we make it. When you bring us into your world of living in the moment, you reconnect our souls with what really counts in life.

So thank you Dear Grover, for all that you bring into our lives. Have the happiest fifth birthday ever!




groverpic ” Animals are such agreeable friends they ask no questions; they pass no criticisms.”

— George Eliot

We All Scream for Ice Cream

IMG_0825When I woke up on Thursday morning who knew that by that evening, two young boys visiting from Pittsburgh would lead me to the promised land. It just goes to show you that your life can change from the mundane to the divine in an instant.

At about 10am, the doorbell rang,  and much to my embarrassment, Doc opened the front door holding a bag of my poop she had just picked up in the yard and was going to throw away. As awkward as that seemed it didn’t faze the two young boys as they came bounding into the house through the front door. Not the least bit tired from their 3 hour trip down the highway, they were ready for action and I was thrilled! They ran right over to me and I responded with a wagging tail and big slobbery kisses to the face. I cleaned out their ears free of charge. (Believe me when I tell you they needed a good cleaning). We ran around in the back yard for a while and just as fast as they arrived, they went flying out the back door with Doc and her friend for a day of fun at the water park. I have to admit, I was ready for a rest, those two boys had a lot of energy.

Many peaceful hours passed when suddenly the back door flew open and the thundering herd was back. The aroma of pizza filled the air, so I stuck close by until one of the boys named Jackson dropped a pepperoni on the floor that I ate in a flash. When dinner was over they asked, “what are we going to do now?” ” Let’s go out for ice cream” Doc said. ” Can Grover come along?” they asked.   And with a nod of agreement, we all piled into the car and headed down the road to Dairy Queen.

Now I don’t want to say that Doc has been holding out on me, but she has. When we got to the Dairy Queen, Doc and I stayed outside while everyone else went in and got their orders. Usually when Doc and I go she gets her ice cream and that’s it, I am just along for the ride.

Soon the boys returned and surprised me with the a most heavenly treat of all treats called a Doggie Sunday. A cup of ice cream with a big dog treat on top. I kind of gave Doc the stink eye while I was eating it. I though she might have been too cheap to ever buy me one, but she claims she didn’t know they had such a thing. She can’t claim that no more. Thank goodness for 11-year-old boys that love dogs.

groverpic ” If you want someone who will listen to you every time, do everything you tell them to do, and always be there for you for better or worse, get a dog.”

— Anonymous

Crushing on Cupcake

IMG_0813Would you find it strange if I admitted that I have developed a crush on a cute pot-bellied pig named Cupcake? I hesitated to make it public because some of my dog friends said the whole thing was weird and that I should stick to my own species. Whatever. Sometimes when you meet the girl of your dreams, she has a pink snout and a curly- cue tail.

One day Doc and I went out to the farm to check out some horses. Doc had the idea that some of the patients she works with might find it calming to be able to work with the horses in addition to working with me. I thought it was a grand idea and came along to be supportive. After meeting a good-looking steed named Sirius, we were told to walk through the stall and out into the paddock if we wanted to meet the resident pig. Pig! I almost said out loud, what’s a pig? And there she was, sleeping in the wet mud, making little grunting pig sounds. When she looked up and saw that a dog was in her sty, she let out a squeal that about broke my ear drums. But as soon as I looked into those little brown eyes I was smitten. We looked each other up and down, sniffed each other and I suddenly found myself joining Cupcake in a roll in the cold gooey mud. It was heaven. To my surprise I vowed my love to her and told her I would return soon. I even posted a picture of the two of us on Facebook to show we were a couple.

After Doc hosed the mud off of me and we started driving home I asked her, “Is it possible for a dog to love a pig?” Doc was still for a moment and then she said, ” Grover, love will show up when your heart is open. It doesn’t matter if it’s a pig, a goat or a beautiful Golden Retriever. If you love a pig that’s fine with me, but just remember one thing, if you date a pig, it probably wouldn’t be right for you to eat bacon any more.” No Bacon!, I screamed, that’s it, hand me the phone, I am breaking up with Cupcake right now. And that was the end of my romance with a pig.

groverpic ” What is man without beasts? If all the beasts were gone, men would die from great loneliness of spirit. For whatever happens to the beasts soon happens to man. All things are connected.”

— Chief Seattle (Iduwamish Tribe)