By Ralph Hood
Gail and I are dog sitting Buddy, a huge, lovable, and handsome dog that seems to think our house is his second home, for he has stayed with us often over the last few years. We support his position on the subject.
We do love that big beast (I know, Buddy. I know you’re not really a beast at all). He is a mix between a husky and a boxer. Sounds dangerous, doesn’t it? But Buddy is a very friendly dog.
Just today a very small dog from next door somehow got through our fence and entered our yard. We were sore afraid that Buddy would swallow the entire dog. Buddy did head that way, but concentrated on making a good friend of the new dog.
Buddy has been spoiled rotten, but he readily accepts this as his inalienable right.
Buddy’s real parents, Ellen and B.J., get his food not from a pet-food source, but from the best supermarket for people food. They feed him home-cooked chicken, sandwiches from McDonald’s, and a dazzling variety of everything he might possibly desire. He prefers, it seems, for the food to be held out by our hands so he doesn’t find it necessary for him to bend over or squat to eat the food.
We keep telling his true parents that we eat all of Buddy’s chicken and other treats, and then we feed Buddy the cheapest dog food we can find (yech!). We really don’t, of course, and Ellen and B.J. know we won’t.
Buddy is amazing to watch and just plain fun to be around.
Buddy is 12 years old and seems not to have aged in the years we’ve known him. I’ll be 80 in a few short months. Gail, on the other hand, says she is not aging at all, and never will. She also assumes that Buddy will live forever.
We once kept Buddy for a couple of weeks while Ellen and B.J. traveled to Europe. I emailed to them that we had sold our house and moved with Buddy to parts unknown. They would not see Buddy or us again. We hadn’t, of course—but we may this time.
Every time Buddy visits us it reminds us that we would like to acquire—or adopt—another big dog ourselves. We’ve owned many big dogs. One of my favorites was a mixed breed. We called him Scamp. He kept me alive by walking with me on the many trails in Huntsville, Alabama, where we then lived.
When our last dog ended his life here in Erwin, we decided that perhaps at our ages, we shouldn’t acquire another. Thanks largely to our enjoyment with Buddy’s visits, we are thinking of changing our minds. Gail expects to gain a puppy when a certain mother dog gives birth to a new litter.
“C’est la vie” say the old folks; it goes to show you never can tell.
But don’t worry Buddy—we want you to visit us and our new dog. You can teach our new puppy how a great dog behaves.
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