Living rural brings an array of oddities to our property. Groundhogs, yard moles, deer and ‘possums. Skunks, canines, felines, and more. Housed in a tree high above the ground at the edge of our property is a family of eagles. We have proudly been home to our “feathered” creatures for several years now. Summertime mornings bring about the ritual from our friend Harry the woodpecker. And I can’t forget yellow dog and frozen Jack. Our area flourishes in magnificent beauty of rich farmlands and fields. God’s great art abounds in every direction with the Rappahannock River sanctioned at the end of our road yet yellow dog, determined to do his daily business outside our door, adopted our yard for countless months. And poor frozen Jack. This is exactly his place of position upon arriving home late one evening–chilled to the bone with his “privates” congealed to the ground. Growling as my husband approached the door we finally had to contact a friend to aid us with Jack.
Cats have always been my choice of pets. Self-sufficient and low maintenance. I have one female to be exact — Bert. Make no mistake the name imposed upon this feline provides for interesting conversation starters. After all do cats really know a male from a female name? Or do they even care? I find them to be creatures of habit interested only in eating and sleeping. It was a cold Friday evening this Superbowl weekend in February of ’06 when my husband and I arrived from work. Perched on our back door was a tiny black mass. It appeared to be rather small and unfortunately four-legged. Viewing the porch while parking the car I could see a tail wagging feverishly. Extremely delighted to see human life form the animal waited patiently on the steps. Gaining range of view in the area we could see a very enthusiastic puppy. She was solid black with dark brown high-lights mustered in her beard. Her eyes were brownish-black with terrier like brows. Puppy had no collar, no tags, no identification of any type. Unable to decide if this half pint was male or female just didn’t matter. We were not keeping this mutt.
Upon waking the next morning I tiptoed to the door. Straining to see if the little one was still present brought instantaneous relief. The stoop was clear, the yard was empty. There was no sight of our miniature intruder. I opened the door and there IT was, the minute-size rascal–resting peacefully on top of the grill. Unsure how junior arrived at her sleeping quarters still puzzles me. One thing is for sure–this little black-eyed. black-haired, fuzzy brow creature was just outright adorable. Upon lifting her off the grill the tail again wagged endlessly. The healthy looking pink tongue tried repeatedly to reach my mouth. No way sweetheart you just can’t stay.
Feeling sorry puppy had to endure the cold I relinquished my hard nose attitude and bought her a bed. The weather was exceptionally cold and it was clear she was not leaving–for now anyway. Surly she had not been abandoned. One thing was certain. There would be no love affair of my heart and puppy was not entering through the doorway of my home. Amen!
Growing up with dogs I knew the energy mom expended on being a good dog parent. My mother would cook rice and hamburger for our canines and dad would take the mongrels on long walks. We had a variety of breeds from standard size poodles to dachshunds and spaniels. Each genre of hound had their own unique personality–loving, skittish and even cross. Our pets lived in paradise–like the Beverly Hills Chihuahuas.
Monday evening preceding the Superbowl was puppy’s day of reckoning. With skepticism we sanctioned her into the bathtub and into our lives. We named our little pupus Annie B. She was 6 months old when she joined our family. I can’t imagine my life Annie-less. Each day I look forward to returning from work just knowing Annie awaits me with bated breath directly behind the back door. She torments the cats and sleeps in the bed. She is my companion, foot follower and best friend. God knew I needed Annie and Annie needed me.
“Live Life to its Fullest and Follow Your Dreams”
See you soon!
An animal’s eyes have the power to speak a great language.