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  • Writer's pictureTerri Tomoff

Ground Dog Day!

Many folks may be celebrating Groundhog Day today, February 2nd, but I'll take it a step further to celebrate a Grounded and Good Dog. I have nothing against Punxsutawney Phil and his shadow, but dogs are happy, sunny, and bright most of the time—they don't care about their shadow, but they might care about yours.

Disco, our granddog, has had plenty of air time here on this blog, showing off her prowess, silky coat, and big smile. She is the light of our lives, her parents' lives, and, frankly, anyone she meets. She is both a people person and a doggy person. But today, I'd like to celebrate those dogs (and cats) who are intuitive to their human needs. Whether they lend us a "shoulder" to cry on or keep us company when we are not feeling well, those who "know something is up" and are there to take care of us are truly special. Perhaps you know of a dog like that.

Our Wally dog was very intuitive on many occasions. When "The Best Daughter" was two years old and at the top of the stairs, ready to tumble down a dozen steps, Wally laid down in front of her to avert disaster. He would also sit by our sides for hours if someone did not feel well (especially when Ryan was diagnosed with leukemia in 1996). He kept watch when we thought he was sleeping. There is a story in The Focused Fight: A Childhood Cancer Journey: From Mayhem to Miracles when Wally never left Ryan's side, including his bedroom before, during, and after a night of sleep, because he sensed Ryan's relapse before anyone else did.

Our poodle mix Lucky, small and cuddly, would gently lay his head across Ryan's torso while they watched TV together. Lucky didn't mind a bit either when Ryan moved around while playing video games. Although he wasn't as intuitive as Wally, he got with the program knowing he was needed to help Ryan as he recovered from weeks of chemotherapy and cancer treatments. Plus, he was Olivia's best companion in the house while we were in the hospital so much. Those two also had a special bond. A few years later, Loo-C-Loo (a Labsky-Lab and Husky mix with piercing blue eyes and a silky black coat) came into our lives. As "aloof" and regal as she was, she immediately bonded with Olivia, much to our delight.

It's kind of funny that I remember those moments of our Grounded and Good Dogs. But aren't they all in their own special ways? We passed the torch of Good Dogs to the next generation with O & Bo - and we are set to dog sit anytime they need help with her.




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