At age 55, I unexpectedly found myself a single person, facing the prospect of living on my own for the very first time in my life. Not really alone, though; I had my loyal-and-honest, brave-and-true 4-year-old Beauceron dog, Falcon, and two feisty and funny Abyssinian cats, Hobnob and Ariana aka “Kitty Galore.” I couldn’t bear to stay in the house I had rented for five years and lived in with the person I thought would be my forever husband, so I bought a house, another first for me. I love my house so much that I still, four months later, find myself wandering through the rooms, thinking “I love you” at them. And I have found living on my own to be a very interesting and rewarding experience in many ways, some of which I will talk about in future posts.
Yet, something was missing. I needed a puppy. In spite of my new situation and all its complications – actually, probably because of that – I needed the sweet, lively, happy energy that only a puppy can provide. And I wasn’t without experience; I knew exactly what I was in for, the challenging as well as the delightful. I have been dog-crazy all my life, and have worked as a dog trainer for many years. I knew that a puppy meant many nights of broken sleep, early mornings (ugh), gallons of Nature’s Miracle, furniture sprayed with Bitter Apple, crates in my lovely new rooms, rolling up and putting away the nice rug, getting out to socialize and train, and much more. Puppies are hard work – unless you don’t care what kind of dogs they grow into, and I care, very much. Falcon was amazing, and I wanted the new puppy to be just as wonderful. So, hard work there would be – made even more challenging because I was going through an outbreak of Löfgren’s Syndrome, a type of sarcoidosis that makes joints painful and swollen, leaves one short of breath, plus another handful of delightful symptoms. But – the house needed a puppy, and there was no way to get around that.
So, enter Jeremiah Mes Yeux Vigilants, aka “Jed.” Here he is looking very innocent the day he arrived, at 9 weeks of age.
Jed is a Beauceron, like Falcon: a French sentry breed. He will weigh 100 pounds or close to that when he is grown – and he is growing fast! Here he is at five months of age, with Falcon:
Jed is a busy, busy boy, regularly trotting around the house, giant feet thumping, rhythmically squeaking the toy in his mouth. His tail is always waving, even while he’s eating his meals. Sometimes when I offer him a particularly appealing treat, his joy overwhelms him and he has to run a couple of laps around the living room before he can come back and accept it.
Now THAT is why I needed this puppy.