Growing up in suburbia we didn’t have a family pet so I didn’t understand the attachment my friends had with their pets. We had the occasional gold fish from our school’s carnival, but that was about the extent of it. I will say though the past 15 years with our dog Cody has given me that understanding that pets are a part of the family and when they’re gone we grieve just as much as we grieve the loss of any family member.
Our dog, Cody, found my fiancé at the time, prior to my Farmer and I getting married. So he’s been with us before the unity of our lives, when we moved to the farm, as well as through the births of our three sons. At the time he was one of the four pets my Farmer and I had together, and until a week ago he was the last one standing. He took a piece of my heart with him, but left me with many lessons about dogs.
They are intuitive creatures which caught me by surprise. When I was pregnant with our first son Cody would always get between me and any visitor he didn’t know. I was blown away when it first happened.
They have personalities that included likes and dislikes. He hated storms, hated being inside or cooped up in the garage (unless there was a storm), and hated the sound of the UPS truck. He loved when we grilled out because he got many pieces of cheese, loved getting a treat from his treat bucket, loved digging in the landscaping to find that special cool spot to lay in, loved chasing squirrels, watching the kids play, wrestling with my Farmer, barking at the birds, greeting visitors, and the list goes on.
He also taught me unconditional loyalty, unconditional love from a dog, and they protect those who love them. I will say though we had a mutual respect of one another. He knew I couldn’t pet him much due to being allergic to him, and I knew that my Farmer was his master. He listened to me to a point, but for the most part he was My Farmer’s dog.
The trust he had for us to take care of him and the love you saw in his eyes and actions was priceless. He had freedom to roam, but always stayed on the farm and close to the house and barns. He would sit in certain spots while we were gone and wait for us to return, and as soon as he saw us he’d hurry into the garage, once the door was open, and greet us. Then it was time for a treat.
The love for a dog is like no other and I’m so honored he picked us for his family. I will hold dear to my heart the joy he brought to our lives, the moments I felt his love, and the many lessons he taught me. Thanks “Great White Hunter!” You stole my heart and I will forever remember and LOVE you.
(Now it’s time for another tissue.)