Did I feel any remorse for what I had done? To be honest no, not at first. I had no feeling about it at all, that is until I got caught. I had done what I did because that is what dog’s do. We live in the moment and don’t really worry about consequences. If it suites our needs or brings us happiness we go for it. I suppose that makes me sound rather self-centered, but dogs don’t really get diagnosed with such things. We are just dogs acting in the way our animal instinct drives us, and what I did the other day is a perfect example.
Doc has a wooden picket fence that goes around our back yard. It is about twelve years old, so some of the pickets have gotten weathered over time and Doc has been replacing them as needed. Well she missed one that was rotting and that is where this story begins. I was playing over by the fence and I must have leaned against it, when snap, the bottom of one of the pickets broke off. It was just about that time that my doggie friend Frankie, came outside. As he ambled over to the fence and noticed that I had broken it, we looked at each other like we both had the same plan. I guess great minds think alike, so we started digging furiously. There was dirt flying everywhere. We knew the gap at the bottom of the fence would be big enough for little Frankie to slip under if we just dug a little deeper into the earth. It didn’t take long at all and Frankie was able to wiggle his way under and into my yard. We must have played a good fifteen minutes before Doc noticed from inside the house. As she came outside she looked confused, not understanding how Frankie had gotten in the yard, when she looked over and saw the damaged fence and the hole in the ground. She did not look happy.
Frankie got sent home and I had to go back in the house while Doc surveyed the damage. I didn’t really feel guilty until Doc came in and told me that she would have to replace the picket and fill the hole. More work added to a long list of things needing done she said with exasperation in her voice. I felt a little guilty but knew the fence wasn’t my fault so I let that go. But digging a hole and letting my friend in the yard without permission, well that was another story. I went over and hid behind the couch laying nose to tail trying to get my 82 pound body as small as possible hoping Doc would not see me. While she went outside to fix the fence and fill the hole, a wave of remorse came over me. I tried to shake it off, but it didn’t work. Soon I fell asleep.
The next day I was still feeling guilty and decided to make amends. I found Doc in the kitchen getting breakfast and asked if we could have a heart to heart. ” Sure” she said. So I sat down in front of her and told her I was feeling guilty about causing her more more work and wanted to know how I could make it up to her. ” Think before you act the next time”. she said. “Dogs and people get themselves in trouble by not thinking things all the way through before they make a decision.” I forgive you Grover, now you forgive yourself as well. It’s time to move forward.”
“No amount of guilt can change the past and no amount of worry can change the future.” Umar Ibn Al-Khattabb
April 20, 2022
Love this. Important for us to forgive ourselves too.
April 21, 2022
Thank you for your comments. Best wishes,
April 27, 2022
Thank you Grover, and Thank you Mary Beth. It feels like I have known you for awhile. Grover, your stories have helped in ways I can’t explain.
April 27, 2022
Thank you for you kind words, as a therapy dog I am always happy to help.