Monday, January 12, 2015

Day 2389

I am the worst when it comes to aging.  I don't like change and I certainly don't like to think about anybody getting ... older.

Little grey hairs have crept up on Marge's chin.  First you could only see them up close and in person, but now, they are prominent.  She doesn't have much of a grey muzzle, nor does she have grey eyebrows.  Just a little grey goatee.

When it's gradual and over time, it's hard to notice a big difference from one day to the next.  But seeing a picture of Marge in say, 2008 or 2009 compared to now, and it is apparent that a definite aging process has taken place.  I did just that tonight and was kind of shocked at how Marge's puppylike appearance has morphed in to that of a mature adult dog without me really even stopping to take a pause.

Marge is 7.  She will be 8 in June.

All of you passers-by who keep mistaking her for a puppy.. keep doing it.  My sanity depends on it.

Two thousand, three hundred and eighty nine days. It's just so amazing to think that she has been with me for this long.  It is a bittersweet feeling, especially on a night like tonight where I am pretty much just sappy out of nowhere. This dog pretty much does everything with me. She has wiggled her way into my social life, my family life, my hobbies. (The exception to that, of course, is Marge accompanying me to the shooting range, since that is neither safe nor Marge's idea of a good time and will therefore never happen!) Seriously, though, the things that Marge used to get left behind for are now a part of her routine.

Remember when Marge had to be crated when guests came over?  She survived a party last month in which 6 people -- 5 of which were GUYS -- came over to visit.  A growl here or there, but nothing that anyone couldn't live with.  And she got to eat any bits of the 4' hero that intentionally or unintentionally fell her way.  A win-win.

Remember when Marge wouldn't go near horses?  She didn't walk or run in to the barn yesterday, but instead wiggled up to Te.  Whole butt wagging.  She whined like a baby when I led him down the driveway in to his pasture yesterday.  She loves the barn.  She loves horse poop and horse grain and horse treats, and although she won't go near just any horse, she has struck up a relationship with one, at least, who has made her feel comfortable. There's a sure fire way to know that Quarter Horses are the best horses.. my dog has befriended one.

Remember when Marge wasn't trustworthy offleash and I had to use that long 20' red line?  Haven't taken it out in ages.  We don't get there as often as we should, but she generally has full reign of the beach, nowadays.  And the field?  The field that was a save haven for her during her fearful days is now a place where she goes to sniff every goal post that she can get to.

Remember when things would occasionally erupt in to chaos, when my dad and my dog weren't at all on the same wavelength?  Those days are pretty much gone.  And in the uncommon occurrence that they resurface, I have somewhere now that I can run to and get the hell out of dodge.

It has been such an amazing ride, one that has taken me places I never imagined I'd go.  I don't mean performance events, either.  If Marge never got another performance title again, it wouldn't matter.  That stuff pales in comparison to the bond we've created outside of that environment, out in the real world.

Thank you for everything, my little MD.  I know there is more in store for us.  You have shown me that the sky is truly the limit.


Jennifer January 12, 2015 at 11:58 PM  

Boy do I know the feeling! I've been sappy the last few days.....I blame it on the gloomy winter weather. I try not to count the days. Katie is about 13 or so and has slowed WAY down. Her hips are failing her too. Her once black muzzle is now almost solid white. She's still trucking along tho. And Rio? He's almost 4 but already turning grey on his muzzle and being a Great Dane, he's almost considered middle age.

My Dad lost his Dalmatian a couple years ago and said he couldn't get another dog; the pain of losing her was too much. I couldn't NOT have a dog. The joy they give me FAR outweighs the sorrow I'll feel when I lose them. Maybe I'm weird. I don't know.

How Sam Sees It January 13, 2015 at 2:09 PM  

She'll always be a puppy! I'm realizing my Harlow is no longer a puppy, but I'm having a hard time accepting it.

Monty and Harlow

KB January 14, 2015 at 9:39 PM  

Yes, they do age. My Shyla started getting gray furs when she was just 1 year old. Now that she's three, she has her own gray goatee! We attribute it to how stressed out she was for most of her life, until fairly recently (and still sometimes now).

But with age comes all the wonderful things you wrote about. Seeing how your Marge has become a calm and happy part of the the ole' world. And knowing that the bond that you have with her is transcendent. You are very lucky to have her and she's lucky to have you!

Anna the GSD January 22, 2015 at 11:25 AM  

Way to go Marge! And way to go mom for helping Marge blossom in to the beautiful young lady she is! (Cause, 8 is totally not old, I is also in the gray chin hair club, and I heard it's all the rage and very Helen Merin like! BOL!)

Dz Dog Mom February 12, 2015 at 3:46 PM  

Way to go Marge! Sounds like you've come a long way! :-)

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