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A dogs life

Nap Any Time

Nap Any Time

It’s been a tough but interesting morning.

John Edwards (the guy from Crossing Over on TV, he is in SA again) was on the radio earlier and he had this amazing conversation with a caller. Goosebumps. Reflection. I really want to go to one of his shows but he is doing intimate shows this time and the tickets are R3950 each. I simply don’t have that much money right now.

Then this e-mail crosses my desk. And it stops me in my tracks for a moment. We are so busy surviving, that we forget our purpose in life. Children don’t have that problem. I’m going to quote the e-mail without modification or checking sources.

Here goes:

A Dog’s Purpose?  (from a 6-year-old).

Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker.  The dog’s owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.

I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer.  I told the family we couldn’t do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.

As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure.  They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.

The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker ‘s family surrounded him.  Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered  if he understood what was going on.  Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully  away..

The little boy seemed to accept Belker’s transition without any difficulty or  confusion.  We sat together for a while after Belker’s Death, wondering aloud about the sad  fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ”I know why.”

Startled, we all turned to him.  What came out of his mouth next stunned me.  I’d never heard a more comforting explanation. It has changed the way I try and live.

He said,”People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life – like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?” The 6-year old continued, ”Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don’t have to stay as long.”

Seriously, isn’t that an amazing insight? I am reminded of my little one who went to school earlier this morning. I’m sad because I won’t see her again for 7 days (remember I’m divorced). The last one she greeted was our 6-month old puppy Blackjacks (x-lab, more stories about that later). They play incessantly, teasing and irritating and hurting each other as only two little ones can do. But they remain inseparable friends. And when he licked her hand the last time it was as if he knew it will be a few days till he sees her again, but he will always be waiting for her by the gate and happy to play with her when she returns.

And I just know that they understand love a lot better than we as adults do.

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