Saturday, February 20, 2010

A Hole In Our Heart

~ February 19, 2010~
Buddy went home to the Angels.

My sunshine doesn't come from the skies,
It comes from the love in my dog's eyes.

~Unknown Poet

In his grief from the loss of a dog, a little boy stands for the first time on tiptoes, peering into the rueful morrow of manhood. After this most inconsolable of sorrows there is nothing life can do to him that he will not somehow be able to bear.

~James Thurber

Thorns may hurt you,
men desert you,
Sunlight turn to fog;
But you are never friendless ever,
If you have a dog.

~ Douglas Mallock

Until one has loved an animal,
A part of one's soul
remains unawakened.

~Anatole France

I talk to him when I am lonesome;
And I am sure he understands.
When he looks at me so attentively,
And gently licks my hand;
Then he rubs his nose on my tailored clothes,
But I never say naught there at.
For the good Lord knows
I can buy more clothes,
But never have a friend like that.

~W. Dayton Wedgeforth

It was a Sunny February afternoon 2009 when we went for a little ride and found our Buddy living in a home that was just barely fit for habitation. Buddy had been advertised in Freecycle and it was a win win situation for Buddy and us. Buddy found a new home and we found a wee critter to love and care for.

Little did we know that this little furry critter was going to walk into our heart and take up residence there as quickly and completely as he did. Buddy came complete with his own baggage. He was very skeptical when it came to men. He just wanted nothing to do with them. Of course J.D. wasn't going to just let it stay that way. Little by little he won Buddy's trust and his love. At some point in Buddy's life someone must have hurt his feet because he was very protective of them. He loved to cuddle with me and it wasn't long before he allowed me to gently pet his little paws as he laid with me or as he sat on my lap at the computer. When J.D. tried to pet his feet Buddy would let out a very slow and low growl that sounded more like a purr. Eventually though he allowed J.D. to pet on his paws without the purr.

I asked the girl that we got Buddy from what kind of food was he eating and she help up a small plastic bag with a handful of the small milk bones in it. Not only did that change to a good nourishing dog food, but Buddy learned that if he begged real sweet and put on a pitiful little face that just about anything that he wanted in the way of food would be shared with him. Buddy didn't just receive love, he gave the love back. Any time that the grandchildren stayed over night, Buddy was up in the middle of the night checking on them and even jumping up into bed with them for a little while just to share the love. Seth being the youngest and littlest attracted Buddy with a special love and caring that he wouldn't give to others. I have to tell you tthe secret that Seth used to win that trust with..... a bag of potato chips. We found Seth on the couch one evening with a full bag of chips on one side of him and Buddy on the other side and Seth giggling as he fed the chips to Buddy one by one. He loved to run and when the boys were here that was always on the agenda.

He was a little ball of energy at times and after J.D. had earned his trust and love, when he was feeling especially playful it was J.D. that he sought out. They played fetch, keep away and hide and seek with the ball. J.D. would wrap the ball up with the bath towel that we kept by the door to dry Buddy's feet with after he had been outside. Buddy would work on getting his ball out of the towel and finally succeed on freeing it. He had played that game just a couple of times and we caught him hiding the ball himself folding the towel over his ball with his nose until it was completely hidden and then freeing it like he did when J.D. hid it. He loved to play rough with J.D. too. J.D. would put on his leather work gloves and let Buddy attack, gnaw, growl and chew on his hands to his hearts content. Yet, he knew that was a game he only played with J.D. and only when he had the gloves on. Yet he was always gentle with me and the children. Over the last few months Buddy had become even closer to J.D. to the point that he was cuddling with J.D. in the recliner when he just didn't do that before.

In the year that Buddy had been with us he had only gone into the road at the most maybe two times. We don't have a clue as to what enticed him to the road on Friday. What ever it was, it would prove to be the last time Buddy would run into the road. I missed my shadow following me through the house and asked J.D. if Buddy had gone out to make some more yellow snow. He wasn't in the house, so we figured he had slipped out when J.D. was bringing fire wood in. J.D. called him a couple of times and when Buddy didn't answer (he always came when J.D. called) J.D. went to the road. I watched as J.D. came down the path carrying Buddy. I knew right then that Buddy was hurt. Otherwise, he would have been struggling to get down and run in the snow. J.D. thought that Buddy was already gone when he picked his limp little body up out of the pool of blood that he was laying in after being hit by a car. When he got him to the house though Buddy moved his eyes when he heard my voice. We wrapped Buddy in his towel and called the vet to let them know we would be bring Buddy in as an emergency. Our Buddy took his final breath half way to the vet's office.

Buddy had my heart wrapped around his paw and he had a sturdy grip on J.D.'s heart as well. No words were needed to know the pain, loss and emptiness that we share over the loss of Buddy. J.D. has always been a tower of strength for me through some pretty difficult times. The death of Buddy brought him to his knees though. I grieve for the loss of our furry little ball of love and my heart aches for the pain that J.D. is dealing with as well.

Buddy, you left a hole in our heart that feels as if it will never be healed. My mind tells me that in time the heart will heal, but my heart says there is no way to heal such a large wound. In spite of the pain that we are dealing with over your death, Boo Puppy, we are grateful that God placed you in our life even for such a short time. We are even more grateful that in the last year of your life we were able to give you more love and and caring than you knew what to do with.

Sleep in peace little one, until we can be together again in another life.


farmlady said...

Dear Jo, Oh, I'm so sorry this happen. Poor little buddy. My heart is so sad for you and JD.
This is a beautiful tribute to your little dog.
He was, as Edith Wharton said... "My little dog; a heartbeat at my(your) feet."
I wish you wonderful memories and the peace of knowing that you gave Buddy the happiest days of his life.
When we lost Moke I thought that my pain would never end but it does get easier. Taking good care of an animal is one of the kindest thing we humans do. God knows this.
Buddy will be waiting over the Rainbow Bridge for you.
Love, Ellie Mae

Nanna said...

Thank you, Jo...

Mike Golch said...

Jo,sorry that You and JD lost your friend.It is always sad when you lose them.My wife and I agree when Harvey goes to join his brothers and sisters that he would be our last one.Saying good bye to them keeps getting harder and harder.

Jess said...

I'm so sorry to come to catch up0 and read this...

I will keep u in my thoughts and prayers...

Hope all is well otherwise..have an awesome week

love, Jess

PEA said...

Oh Jo, I have tears streaming down my cheeks, my heart goes out to you and JD on the loss of Buddy. It's never easy to lose a beloved pet. I know it's little comfort but think of the love and caring you were able to show this little dog after the abuse he had suffered before. Your life will also always be enriched by having known Buddy and gaining his trust and love. My thoughts are with you and JD, sending big hugs from across the miles. xoxox

Lanny said...

Tears and smiles and more tears.

Dirt (my husband) plays the gloved hand battle with most of our dogs too, it is fun to watch and every once in a while the dogs forget it is only a game Dirt plays and they go to grab my hand while I am trying to get some gardening done!

We just lost two dear pets ourselves in the last few weeks, Dirt's first Border Collie and the one who taught him how to work the sheep with a dog, and one of our dear momma cats. Hard to do, but I am thankful for their company and service just the same and wouldn't trade not having them for not having the sorrow of loosing them.