Monday, June 22, 2009
Making a mark
How does an animal as commonplace as a dog leave it's mark on the fabric of the Universe? What could be done to possibly make a difference in the great scheme of things? How can one dog touch a life and leave an indelible impression? What could possibly be done for that one dog's pawprints to leave imprints on the ages?
Field Trial placements?? It could be one way, but they're soon superceded and forgotten, except for a handful of great ones, and even those are soon surpassed. No, I'm convinced that a dog make's it's mark on time by how much it is loved by it's human family. How much of a difference it has made to the lives of it's human companions. How much the gentle temperament of a dog has allowed it to integrate itself into a family, and how that dog has become an important part of a family..
Dogs don't last long. It's a cruel joke that God has played on man, giving the man seventy years or more, and the dog only ten.... If I made the rules, it would be the first thing I would change... So, we have to make the most of the time allotted.
Sandy came to us at about a year old. She was mishandled as a pup, and given away. She had already made a few stops in her young life. When we met, she was being kenneled and was profoundly unhappy. She'd eat enough to keep herself alive, and no more! Everyone could plainly see that something was wrong with this little 30 pound Setter, but no one could understand what it could be. All the other kennel dogs were happy and animated. I was asked if I could find a home for her... She would not make it as a FT performer because of her headstrong ways, but she had genes that folks would like to tap into, so the proviso was the right to breed her.
I thought and thought for a long time as to where she could be placed, and always came up blank. I soon realized it was because I wanted to help this sensitive little dog myself. So, Sandy had already touched me in a small way.
We took Sandy and never looked back! She won't do her birdwork the way I want her to do it! She does it her way! That doesn't always please me, but she atones in so many other ways.
When I call her into me, she comes with a look of total adoration in her eyes and a little wiggle! I know she would do anything for me, and I for her! She's touched my life in ways that are both strange and wonderful.. My life has been enriched by being afforded the opportunity to enrich hers.
So, to me it's quite simple... A dog make it's presence felt for all of time by how much it is loved, and how much that love is returned. And by those criteria, no champion could ever make a stronger statement than my little English Setter... Sandy.