October 3, 2011
White Dog suggested we dedicate today's post to Kodiak of The Thundering Herd, who was suddenly and unexpectedly called North of the Rainbow Bridge this weekend. She felt the handsome, once heartworm positive Sibe, whose family gave pivotal advice to me when our heartworm positive rescue, Puff, first came to live with us, would appreciate the significance.
At that time I was fearful that the haunted, shy, incredibly timid SAWD would never allow me to pet her or touch her without flinching and shaking...or worse yet running outside in winter's cold to hide in a corner of the yard. Kodiak's hu-dad advised me to sit quietly in the room with her, ignoring Puff and reading, and that she would eventually find her way closer. After many many days, Puff did, indeed come to sit beside me...and a week later actually touched the hand I left dangling at my side.
Reading is something we continue to do together, some days with White Dog sitting on the arm of my chair and the others sprawled around me...other days just Puff and I. She sits and lets me stroke her ears as I read; sometimes she lies down and just watches me as I turn the pages.
Today...and I like to think that Kodiak whispered a little woof in SAWD's ear...we hit a new milestone.
As we were reading, just she and I today, Puff shifted from under my petting hand. I expected that she would move and find a comfortable spot to watch me and drift off to nap. I nearly jumped at the pressure on my foot as she settled herself very consciously and surely on my foot. I held still without breathing as she maneuvered to wrap a paw around my ankle and nestle the curve of her neck over my instep. She briefly looked up as if asking for permission then closed her eyes and went to sleep.
I sat still as a stone for 45 minutes, teary at the joy of her warmth wrapped around my foot, just watching the rise and fall of her side. Then a distraction from outside set YoYoMa to barking which started a chain-reaction. The moment was over...but as we were so poignantly reminded this weekend...it is the moments that make life memorable.
Be at peace, Kodiak...and thank you.