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June 12, 2020: Ryder’s Shadow

The day ends with me walking into the kitchen after being outside with the horses. Pete is in the kitchen fixing dinner. Ryder is on her mat. Shadow, the new dog, is at Pete’s feet. Pete is listening to Vivaldi.

If you had told me yesterday morning that this was the way it was going to be this evening, I would have been incredulous. I presumed when I told Pete yesterday that Brianna, our veterinarian’s wife, had Australian Shepherd puppies for sale, that he would have said no before I went any further.

Instead, Pete began telling Zach (our veterinarian) and Brianna, all about Jenna, the Aussie that came to live with

Shadow and littermates

us after her owners abandoned her. Jenna was very insecure and suffered from separation anxiety. This is what he told them.

Pete and I talked about it yesterday afternoon. I told him to just say no, I could handle it. Instead, after weighing the pros and cons, we decided to go over to Zach and Brianna’s place and check out the puppies.

We were told that there was one who was somewhat reserved and that she would be a good one for us. She was a black and tan. I named her Shadow before seeing her.

The best days in life are those in which you walk into a room full of puppies and they jump all over you. It then is not whether you are going to take one home with you, but rather, which one are you going to take home with you? Luck being what it is, this should only occur a few times in your life.

Quite suddenly I was on the floor and nine puppies were crawling all over me. I said to Brianna, that it is too bad that joy is fleeting, and grief lingers. This is because at this very minute, I was experiencing great joy. So many young puppies, full of energy, enthusiasm, and unconditional love. I felt overwhelmed and in a good way.

We knew beforehand that we’d end up with Shadow, the one who was more reserved. She did say hello then backed off as a more boisterous brother pushed her aside and started licking my face. The mother came into the room and restored order. She was also like Shadow, fairly mellow. In fact her name is Ember, and they were calling Shadow Ember Jr.

Overall, visiting the Kaisers was a wonderful experience. We met two of their sons and also met their other animals. They have ducks, geese, a pony, five dogs, birds, and two rabbits. There is considerable love in this household, and I wanted to move in.

We left after introducing Shadow to Ryder who was noncommittal. On the drive home Shadow puked on me. This made her mine.

Pete and I worked around the place and swapped puppy sitting. My sense is that Shadow welcomes being in a place where she can easily catch a few z’s. Right now I am doing puppy duty, at the kitchen table. Pete’s tending to the garden watering and the horses. She is asleep at my feet. I think that today I am going to cling to joy.

Next: 164. 6/13/20: Me and My Shadow

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