Through the eyes of my dog.

My dog looks up at me with adoring soft brown eyes. His toothy grin pulses with his panting as if the anticipation is so great he can hardly contain himself. His gaze follows my every move with rapt delight. What does he see? He has looked at me with that much devotion for over thirteen years. He never has failed in his trust and love.
The other day I yelled at him because I was frustrated about something totally irrelevant. He looked at me with a puzzled and pain filled glare and walked down the hall to his bed in disappointment. He looked back as if to say, “Really?” My shame was great. However, five minutes later, he was at my feet grinning his big grin, and all was forgotten and he had forgiven me. My shame was even greater.
I have learned much from my dog about trust and love. During time of great stress, it was his head in my lap offering comfort as I cried that pulled me through some very bleak moments. There was no judgment, no attempt to resolve my issues. Just the soft thick fur of his neck offered as a place to bury my sobs. And when the moment had past, he would bring a ball to me and say, “It is done, let it go. Come on, let’s play.” He has all the wisdom of the ages.
And it is not that he has never had hardship in his life. He was neglected, abandoned and tossed in puppy jail. He was a mess of dog parts. He has a tail of a golden retriever, the butt and legs of a basset, and a barrel of a body of a very big Labrador. His lion sized head supports the soft droopy eyes of a basset with the proud muzzle of the dog he became. But when he came into my life, his spirit was broken. He weighed 35 pounds but comfortably now supports over 100.
My dog has forgiven so much in his life. He is the perfect example of living in the moment. He trusts me even when I have failed him. He has a look that says this is not acceptable but I will get over it. And he does. He does not hold grudges. He seizes every moment for what it is and he lives them wholly. He throws his whole body in the pleasure of play. When he sleeps, he sleeps soundly only interrupted by the thought of chasing squirrels. Squirrels are his nemesis. He bounds off the back deck in intense pursuit of his quarry that we all know he will never catch. But his faith in his abilities never stops; he never doubts himself. He knows what his needs are and is more accurate in time than any timepiece. His joy when I open the door after a long day reminds me the true meaning of being home.
Everyone who knows him says that he is an amazing animal. He has protected me from intruders and strangers. He loves who I love as if to say my choices are valid. He knows when I need solace and his soft nuzzle can release my fears. We have an intimacy that cements our bond. There is no fear that my touch will be rebuked as I know his favorite scratch spots. He leans into my hug and we will sit together in the comfort of each other, totally secure and safe.
But it is that unwavering look of acceptance and love that astounds me. What does he see that I cannot?

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One thought on “Through the eyes of my dog.

  1. He sees authentic Jane all the time everyday without fail, you are using his eyes more often, we have much to learn from those that love us.

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