Wednesday, February 4, 2009

More About My Boy... Tanner

Seldom in my years on this earth has anyone or anything been such a close part of my everyday life as my best friend, Tanner. As a companion, he's loyal to a fault. As just simple company, he makes my every day brighter. I'd have to say he was a Godsend to me, if only for the pure joy of being shown what unconditional love really is.

Now, I'm sure that there are pet lovers out there who might stop by and read this from time to time, and if that's the case then you already have an idea who Tanner is. How we got together was that I rescued him from a shelter as a young pup. For eleven years I had a Siberian Husky named Yukon, and over those years we developed a relationship of respect and dedication to each other. Again, if you're a pet lover then I don't have to explain this. Anyway, old age finally won out and I had to have Yukon put down, this was the day when you would have seen a grown man cry like a child. I came home to a house that suddenly seemed completely empty and quiet, and there was a presence missing that I couldn't have understood beforehand. So after a few days of this emptiness, I called a friend who works at the local animal shelter and was telling her my story, she immediately said "there's someone you have to come meet." The someone was, you guessed it, Tanner, my Golden Retriever.

She let us go out to an area to play and get acquainted with each other, and it was just great. It seems the owners had moved and not being able to take him along, left him at the shelter hoping I suppose that someone would find and take him in. Well, we did our business there, out to the jeep and he was ready to ride. That's the first time I realized how he loves to ride, so now it's just a regular thing, him and me going through the drive thru where the waitresses all know him by name.

He has his own personality, and I have to say I have never seen a more loving or devoted dog. He meets me every day when I come home from work, we have our regular routines each day, and at night he knows exactly what to expect with treats and such. There are actually times when I wonder if he realizes he is a dog at all. We watch TV together, when I'm on the computer, as now, he's laying at my feet under the desk, and believe it or not, he has really become a bluegrass lover. He will lay and listen when I'm playing around on the guitar or piano, but when I play the banjo he stands and watches, when I nod my head he sings, he has even learned most of my ending licks to songs so that when he hears that he knows it's time to come up and be praised for such a good job of singing. Or could it be that smile means he's just happy that it's over???

You can spend time with your pet, and you can learn his or her mannerisms, such as knowing when they're happy, their smiles, when they feel embarrassed or when they're sad. If you pay attention, you can see that they also know these actions when you are feeling a certain way also, and will react on it. As for myself, I feel lucky to share my time with this 120 pound ball of fur and love who gives unconditionally 24 hours a day, and wants more than anything to only get love and attention in return.
If you're a fellow pet lover, I would love to hear of your best friend and some of the things that make you realize this is something special in your own life.