Today I heard from one of my puppy families. He sent me a text with a picture of his girl Daisy. Daisy is about 8 months old, a beautiful 4rth generation Fountain Falls English Goldendoodle. We texted back and forth a few times and then he called me. "I just thought it would be easier to talk to you," he said. "I want to tell you about Daisy. My wife is not an animal person and never will be but now she is a Daisy person. Daisy waits for her to come home because she knows she will get a good ten minute belly rub. Then off they go together while my wife changes from work. No one can believe she has been won over by this dog, at least until they meet Daisy."
"A goldendoodle can win over just about anyone"I said. "They are amazing aren't they?"
There was a pause before he continued. "I don't know if I told you but my daughter died this past year. Daisy has been such a comfort. My doctor wrote a note declaring that she is my service dog. I take her everywhere I go. I can't tell you what this dog has done for me. "
We continued the conversation for awhile, said goodbye and promised to talk again soon. I sat for awhile. I had so much paperwork to do, a vet appointment to make, a dog to transport to Asheville and many other things that it takes to raise these precious pups. Sometimes I get caught up in the details. I wake in the morning and my first thought is how to prioritize all that needs to be done. Some days there is much less to do than others. Other days I wake up early exhausted after an all night litter delivery or saddened terribly by a puppy that didn't make it.
But then I'll get a call or email. An email like the one from a mother of a chronically sick child that says her constant companion Sully, seems to have such wisdom and comfort in his amber eyes. "It's like he is saying to me, 'I know, it's really hard sometimes, but I'm here by your side'. How can one dog be such an important part of my life. I don't know how I ever did without him."
I get such wonderful pictures like the one of Frisco's son Johny, dancing with his family at a street festival in New York City. I love the ones of my pups on family vacations surrounded by kids, swimming in pools, riding in a kayak or a plane, running on a beach, piled on a bed with their families, sitting in an owners' lap by a campfire or wearing a silly costume. Sometimes they have mud dripping from their fur or a torn up shoe in their mouth but always with a light hearted comment. "If he wasn't so cute I might be mad at him". These tell me the story of their lives . They tell me that what I do matters. The long hours, the sometimes long nights, the hundreds of miles driven, the sadness when no matter how hard I try I can't get a new born to take that first breath, it's all worth it.
I pick up warm milk satiated little two week old bodies and smell their puppy breath while mom calmly watches my every move. I see her gaze shift to the doorway and see puppy daddy Calhoun peaking around the doorway, curious to see what takes so much of my attention. Mom has already let him know that he is to keep his distance, at least for now. He sits patiently waiting for me to have a seat on the sofa so we can have his afternoon snuggle. "In a minute I say, a little more paperwork, one more email" I return to work only to have something furry lay on my foot. Hmmm, I guess there is always tomorrow to finish that litter registration.