Wednesday, March 14, 2018

...And My Shadow

Me and my Shadow
Strolling through the fields of grass...

Our energetic protector of eleven years, insists that one of us walk with her daily, and that's a healthy trait for us. In the beginning, as a rescue dog, she didn't know how to act like a dog.

Four days abandoned in an outside cage, when her owner died suddenly of a heart attack, she’d been denied food and shelter as spring storms roared through. A week later, safe in our home, she whimpered and crawled under tables and beds hiding from us, afraid to walk room to room. She slept beside the bed, and ate her meals beside the bed, fearful of other spaces. She'd only go outside "to go hurry" if one of us went with her. 

A friend sent me a book called The Loved Dog which helped me to deal with her fears of the world.  Then one summer afternoon, three months after I rescued her, we were walking around the backyard. While I

admired our flowers, Lucy sniffed for varmints and critters.  Suddenly, she barked at the neighbor, as if to say, "Don't come close to my cow."  My neighbor and I were startled. Lucy had never barked before.  She scared herself and looked around to see what had happened, then she barked again. Our little dog was growing into a true watch dog, and companion. She would make sure that no one came near me until she knew the person was friendly.

In the first few months, she would not let Jack get close to me. There were some unpleasant moments at our house when Lucy decided that I needed protection day and night from Jack.  At last, through perseverance, table
playing tug of war
scraps, and daily play treats, Jack and Lucy formed a bond. Then she began immediately training us, herding us from room to room. 

 She taught us how to stay young by playing childhood games with her. Our favorite game is hide-n-go-seek with tennis balls and doggie toys, but often while walking in the fields Jack will wonder off and hide. Much to Lucy’s chagrin she then smells the air until she picks up his scent, then runs like a fox across the grasses to find him.  Sometime she scolds him with a bark for not staying up with us.  We laugh. Her return run to me is not the same as her search mode run. Once she finds her man she runs back to me with a swirling tail like a helicopter that nearly lifts her off the ground. We laugh again.

Lost and found in the field. 

Her morning belly rub ritual. 
Eleven years later, Lucy, is still my constant companion, by my side, near my feet, across the path, under the table on my feet, nosing her way into the bathroom, and nudging me when I cough at night or when she simply wants her head scratched. When I scream in a nightmare, Lucy lets out a whining howl to awaken me. If that doesn’t work she leaps onto the bed on top of Jack to let him know that I need help! 

Immediate and unconditional love is all she knows. She doesn’t understand when I say, “Tomorrow or maybe, or later. Her heads cocks to one side and then the other until I reconsider and say, "Ok, we will play now."

She truly is a gift to us. Each day she reminds us how to live ‘joyfully.’

The Greatest Game Ever Played.


  1. Aw, Lucy is adorable! I love her story!

  2. What a wonderful tribute to Lucy! She sure is a sweetie and hit the jackpot when you and Jack adopted her. nv

  3. Great post.. love it. Our little buddy Bailey is so much the same for us. bdb