Welcome to Round 8 of ABC Wednesday. The meme was started by Mrs. Denise Nesbitt, and people from all over the world come together to play and share their entries. Each week word(s) beginning with the designated letter are selected and woven into a post.
This time around, I’ll be taking each letter and pairing it with a personal experience or life lesson; hopefully with a photo, but I’m not promising anything. This week I’m going to show you Bandit, the first dog Entrepreneur and I owned together.
Married in July, we found ourselves dog owners by October. Bandit was a full-fledged Collie dog. And one of famous pedigree too. Mom was a “Lassie puppy”…meaning that his mom was part of a Lassie litter contest that people registered for to win a puppy. I don’t remember who won the Lassie puppy, but we ended up with one of that dog’s puppies. Clear as mud? Good. Let’s move on.
Bandit accompanied us when transferred to Omaha, NE for Entrepreneur’s job. All in all, he moved with us 6 times. He proved quite adept in scaling and digging under fences to escape to visit the neighbors…3 blocks away. Many times I drove through the neighborhood calling his name when it was discovered that he’d bolted from the backyard. I think he was just bored and looking for friends. One time fireworks scared him so badly that he wedged himself through the fence gate and was gone for almost a week. A kind man called us to say there was an exhausted dog sleeping in his front yard wearing tags with our name, and did we want to come and get him.
When children came along, he took to them like the shepherding breed he was. Gentle to a fault, he never bared a tooth or uttered anything that sounded like a growl. What’s theirs was theirs, and what’s his was theirs as well. There was no personal space between them. My kids spent a lot of time on the floor.
He had issues with baby pools. Since he had such a long, thick coat, we got him a baby pool of his own for the hot, summer months. He laid in the pool, relaxing for most of the summer. When the kids were old enough to have a baby pool of their own, there was some confusion as to whose pool was whose. Many times I looked outside to see him in their Little Tykes pool and them is his Walmart one.
We were fortunate to have him for 12 wonderful years. Sadly, he had a stroke one summer day while we were at work and the kids at school. When we found him in the yard, he’d also suffered heat stroke because he couldn’t get into the shade. He tried to hang on through the night, but the damage was done. All systems were shutting down. His head laid in my arms as the vet sent him to doggy heaven. It was the hardest thing I’d ever done in my life.
He was my “first born.” I learned a lot about parenting through raising a puppy. The unconditional love of a dog shows you a lot about life and about yourself. He was a great teacher.