Last night, after an unexpected long afternoon/evening away from home, I opened the front door and heard a familiar sound—Keela dragging herself off the couch to come and greet me. Couple of seconds later she was at my feet, saying hello with her usual full-body stretch.
Very Excellent Husband Don wasn’t home yet. It was late, the house was quiet. I was tired. I was sad. But I wasn’t alone, because my dog was right beside me.
Keela sniffed my legs to see where I had been (I would have gotten the evil eye if she smelled a strange dog) and then sat, waiting for me to bend down so she could give me a couple of kisses. Of course she accepted scratches behind the ears and a good head rub, but mostly she wanted to give me a kiss. She wanted to give. To me.
There is something about a dog. The unconditional love they offer. The joy they find, over and over again, from a game of fetch or a good chew toy. The baleful look when they’re scolded. The uncanny ability to give you comfort exactly when you need it.
Five years ago, she was in the very last pen in a very long line of pens at a puppy rescue on a lonely country road. I remember all the other pens had two or three pups, but she was all by herself. No way I could leave without her.
She is my constant companion. When I’m in the barnyard, she’s frequently at the gate, waiting patiently for me to finish my chores.
Our yard is her kingdom, and she guards it well from her throne (bed) on the patio. She runs to check out any hikers walking in the open space. She gives me a few quick barks to let me know someone is around, but then dissolves into tail-wagging and friend-making. She works every day keeping animal predators out and chickens in. It’s a hard job. She does it well.
She is not a perfect dog, but then I am not a perfect trainer. She gets overly excited when friends arrive (people are here to see me!) and for the life of me I can’t get her to settle down until she feels like she’s greeted them appropriately, which sometimes/usually means jumping up. We’re working on it.
She has an off-the-charts-strong prey drive. She will sit stock-still, watching an exceptionally large gap in the fence slats where bunnies like to come and go. She might not move for almost an hour, hoping any rabbit that strays into the yard will come just…a….little…closer. While this is not a problem, me getting nearly pulled to the ground when she spies a rabbit while we’re out on a walk is a little sketchy. (I’m pretty sure my leash-holding arm is longer than my other arm!)
So she’s not perfect, but who cares? She’s my best friend.
(Shared at From the Farm, Old-Fashioned Friday, Fabulous Friday, Little House Friday, HomeAcre Hop, Simple Lives Thursday, Homestead Blog Hop, Backyard Farming Connection, Tuesdays With A Twist, Maple Hill Hop, Thank Goodness It’s Monday, Clever Chicks and Simple Saturdays)