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Sunday, July 1, 2012

Life Lessons Learned from a Little Dog

There are many things that are impossible to comprehend unless you have experienced the love and devotion of a dog. When non-dog lovers look at our furry little friends, many of them see is a lot of work or ties that keep you from doing what you want to do. A restriction on freedom.

Nothing could be further than the truth!

There is so much we can learn from our pets. We have learned these and more life lessons from our little Charlie, just by watching him and experiencing his unconditional love:

  1. It's ok to be silly. Playing with Charlie: chasing him around the house, tussling with him with his favorite toys, playing fetch or even taking him for a walk, allows us brief moments of pure joy and silliness. And it feels great!
  2. Sharing is caring. When Charlie places his little bone in our shoes, he is showing us how much he loves us. When Charlie brings us one of his toys, and looks up at us with bright shining eyes, he is giving us the only thing he has to share: his love.
  3. Laughter is good for you. We have done more laughing since Charlie came into our lives that we have in years. Watching him play with Munchkin, the 2 of them chasing each other, or watching him sleep sprawled on his back (looking like a grocery store chicken) has literally brought us to tears of laughter. 
  4. Everyone is a friend (until proven differently). Look at people through your pet's eyes: everyone is a potential friend: a loving hand, a kind voice. Even when pets get more wary with age, they still wag their tail before barking. Pets don't judge because of age, appearance, culture or size. Be wary, be watchful but be kind.
  5. Family first. Pets love their people before anyone else. They will protect you, put up with your foibles and quirks, adjust to your schedule and always be waiting for your return. That's the power of unconditional love.
We've also learned that he loves us in the morning, when our hair is sticking straight up and at night, when we are so tired that we can barely make that last evening walk with him. He doesn't care what we look like, how we dress or how little money we have. When we give him his "good boy" treat, he is thrilled with whatever he gets. We've found that we, like other dog walkers in our community, stagger out our door with coffee cup in hand every morning, wearing our sweats or pj pants. Pride goes right out the window (and it helps when your neighbor looks no better than you!).

Next time: Charlie's new tricks.

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