Random Acts of "Kindness"

JUST A DOG

When Robin joined our family, she weighed 25 pounds. Her fur was very coarse and she was always scratching or nibbling on her feet or legs. She was a lovely size, not too small, not too big. SHE HAS GROWN! Not only are her legs longer, so is the rest of her body. She takes up more room on the bed, not curling up in a ball but stretching out in the middle from side to side. She likes to lay next to either myself or my husband, but I think she is trying to touch both of us.

I don’t know how much she weighs now, I’m guessing at thirty pounds. She doesn’t fit as comfortably on our laps as she once did. I noticed that when she ate chicken, she seemed to scratch more. We changed her dog food to one for sensitive stomachs and skin. It is salmon based. Recently I discovered that her fur is not as coarse. It is silkier. I wonder if I ate more salmon, if my hair would be healthier?

We finally were able to visit our daughter and family in Central Illinois. Robin enjoyed being with the crew — two children, and two dogs. I was concerned because my daughter doesn’t have a fenced in yard — they have the wireless fencing but Robin didn’t have a collar. She stuck one foot in the pond behind their house chasing geese but came when my husband called. We put her on a long lead, stuck in the ground. I heard the poodle barking and investigated. I saw Robin running across two neighbor’s yards — she had pulled out of her harness. Luckily she came when I called and I adjusted her harness. .

She slept on a pillow on the floor up in our bedroom. I gave her Benadryl and she only woke the household two nights. Food wasn’t a problem. We separated the dogs when eating. Robin didn’t want to go home when it was time. Very tired, she slept for the rest of the day and most of the next. She really missed the crew, had no appetite for a few days.

I was worried, but thankfully I didn’t need to. Now we will have to see how she likes going camping. She has put so many holes digging to China in our backyard that we had to cover most of it with mulch. Cedar and pine are safe for dogs. Cedar has the added benefit of preventing fleas. Robin likes to eat both of them.

Lately the noise in the middle of the night has caused a problem. She is defending the house. Three men were across the street about 2:00 AM. Robin didn’t like that at all. She not only barked but went downstairs and growled for many minutes. Sadly the episode was repeated the next night. This time a man was having a loud conversation on a cell phone. There might be more Benadryl in her future.

The morning after we arrived back home, our son shared a dream with me. “I was visited by two friends last night — Pap and Mabel. Pap put on a red woman’s coat and put Mabel on a leash. I’ll be right back” he said. “I’m going next door.”

Pap is my father. I’m confident he always travels with me. Mabel is our chocolate Lab. When we sent her home, I dreamt she was with our daughter and family in Central Illinois. Maybe because of Robin, we need her help.

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