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Dedicated to Bart, who had the Most Beautiful Tail

"It's very simple. Dogs and cats and other talented animals have tails; their tails, with their thousands of flourishes, provide them with a wonderfully complex language of arabesques, not only for what they think and feel and suffer, but for every mood and vibration in their feeling tone. We have no tails, and since the more lively among us need some form of expression, we make ourselves paintbrushes and pianos and violins..."

Hermann Hesse


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Why our Christmas Tree will look a Little Different this Year!

As blog followers all know, we lost our wonderful boy, Bart, at age 16, earlier this month. It was time for his Journey to the Bridge. He was our First Dog, and my Heart Dog. 

To celebrate his life, and those of all of our dogs, I printed some selected photos. I am mounting and decorating them. They will become the ornaments on our Christmas Tree. Literally, this project will be finished today. 

This season things have been a bit topsy turvy. Two weeks before Xmas I decided to foster a rescue dog. Long story short, he presented a medical emergency almost immediately upon arrival. This necessitated a huge number of extra hours of my time, over the past two weeks. The result: I am the least prepared for Xmas as I've ever been. Tree isn't decorated, gifts are wrapped, but no ribbon, pie makings are here...but no pie...etc.

Last night I remarked to Moe that so many of these things were not yet done and my holiday was in chaos because of the mountains of time I've spent working on restoring the health of the foster dog, Zippy, and finding him a home, to which he went yesterday evening. He's there on a 30-day trial, but it is probably The Most Perfect match I've ever made in my 12 years of rescue..unbelievably wonderful! 

When I said, "Well, all of these things are not done, no pie, no ribbons, no tree decorations, house is complete and total mess...etc." Moe's reply was, "Oh, you mean you spent this time before Christmas doing something more important. You know...you saved Zippy's life!"

He's absolutely right. Given where Zippy was, in a high-kill shelter from which he wouldn't have been adopted. And then the medical issues that could easily have resulted in his death if not handled promptly. Yes, I saved his life...twice! I guess this Christmas is exactly as it was meant to be!

Here is a small sampling of the "ornaments" that will adorn our tree this year. I've only got about 25 more to make!  Wheee...

A door, coated with pupkiss. Kenai, Bart and Elbee (from left to right)
Our First Trio of wonderful dogs!

A portrait of Bart, shortly after joining us - age 6 or so.

One of my favorites: When we went up to Oregon to get our most recent puppy, Denali, Bart got to herd sheep. He was in his element. It was one of Bart's best and most beautiful days!

One of our last pictures. Bart always supervised while we put up the outdoor lights at Xmas. This year was no exception.

Denali - just being herself!

Another of Denali, showing just how fluffy a fluff coat can be!

Now that I've been rescuing dogs for 12 years or so and am just starting to feel like I've got some experience, I've come to see that one of the most crucial elements of rescue is the ability to treat each and every potential adoption as an individual circumstance. No two are ever alike. There is a time and place for everything, and considering each family's requirements is pivotal.

So as Bart started to fade I knew that while, no one could ever take his place, I would find myself wanting another "man" in the canine family. After we lost Bart, I researched potential rescue dogs, as possible additions. I looked at tons of postings, inquired about more than a dozen different dogs. After all that, I knew that none of them was right as a companion for Denali and Elbee. Denali is rather particular as to who she will accept, so it makes the choice even more challenging. As much as I wasn't really thinking of taking a puppy, I ultimately realized it was the right pairing for Denali.

Another thing I know about finding dogs...they find you. If you're able to listen, they will call to you. When I was able to clear my head a bit after losing Bart, I realized that a particular dog HAD been calling to me for awhile. I just hadn't been listening very well. Suffice to say I figured it out. That little voice was finally heard. Just after Christmas we'll be adding a new man to the family, and here he is:

Meet our new little Cardigan Welsh Corgi puppy, "Sage" (Registered name: Redwood Sunrise)


Sage has a somewhat unusual coloration for a Cardi. He's a Clear Red (Recessive Red), also referred to as a "Pink." To learn more about this, and see some other pictorial examples, visit this Cardigan Colors link and scroll down till you see Clear Red listed.

Warm Wishes to all for the Best of the Season!


1 comment:

Traci said...

what great decorations!!! :) And your story made me well up with tears.... AGAIN. :P *hugs*