Saturday, March 23, 2019

My Keys, My Rusty

It’s been a crap week.  My wife and I both got sick with severe gastrointestinal “distress” probably picked up at the hospital Monday during the IVC filter shock horror drama. Consequently what was to have been a few serene days off turned into bed rest and incontinence. Gross. 

Allow me therefore to present my consolation, my Rusty. I worried when I was bed ridden he would forget me. 

My wife makes endless fun of me for my worries. We have if anything grown even closer, Rusty and I. 

Throughout my convalescence he has kept a close eye on me. If I fall back on a walk, tired or photographing, he stops and comes back to check up on me. 

In the evening he flops on my chest when I get into bed. When I arrive home in the car he leaps up as if he’s worried I may be struggling without him. 

My wife is the manager but Rusty is the cheerleader. He is a morale boost everyday. Oh and there’s a family of chickens out in the middle of nowhere. How they got by the side of the road I don’t know but they are thriving and look plump and content. Cheers to them and I raise my hand every time I pass by.  This time I stopped and photographed the paterfamilias. 

I suppose one should be embarrassed by the emotional connection to a mere dog. I feel okay about it. I’m married and I have human friends I value so I can say my dog fills a unique part of a life that is reasonably rounded. 

I love giving him freedom and a great life. Walks, varied food, no fences and a space on the furniture. He never seems to take any of it for granted and he’s as grateful to me as I am for him.  

He is as handsome in real life as he is photogenic. I am constantly fending off compliments aimed at the little tyke! 

I also find it interesting that he develops clear antipathies for people and/or their dogs. If he holds back I respect that and walk away. He is smart. 

Rusty survived a tough start and he deserves all happiness. In a single week of my life that sucked he has given back more than I can say. All I can do is thank him in a way he can’t even understand and post his pictures here. 

So forgive me for waxing lyrical about a hound. Especially if you don’t like dogs. People who don’t like dogs like my dogs. Rusty doesn’t steal food even if left on a coffee table. He lays down and you will forget he’s there. 

He will beg but it’s up to you to teach him you aren’t giving in. He gets more treats than he needs away from our table, but he will try to stare you down. If you give in you are lost. Don’t feed him from the table! 

Scratch him between the eyes or rub his tummy  to make him happy. 

I thank him for being my coach, taking me on walks, exercising my legs, getting me out of bed to see the sunrise in places most people never see. Normal people are obsessed with beaches and palms. I’m not that way so my Keys look a lot like mangroves and my dog.  My world.