Anyone who has known me for a long time also knew my four-legged soul-mate, Deejay, a shepherd/collie cross who came into my life many years ago after my family rescued her and her mother and two sisters (four others had been killed by wild things before we found them) from under a bench in Florida. We found homes for two of the puppies, Mom-dog went to live with my parents, and Deejay romped into my heart for the next 14 years. She died peacefully in my arms in July 1995. There has not been another dog in my life since.
I am contemplating changing my dogless existence. Truth to tell, it’s been a longing for years, but now the idea is changing status from longing to maybe-I-can-do-this-how-long-am-I-going-to-live-anyway kind of thing. Ken and I even measured out where a fence could be installed in the backyard so dog and I can romp around and hang out. Fond memories not yet created drift across my mind. I envision long walks around the lake on evenings like this one…cool and companionable and happy.
But I am also aware of the flip side: The hard facts of how much it would cost for a decent fence, vet and feed bills, potential training and compatibility issues. And what if our cats, whose ages range from 4 to 16, can’t adapt? These guys are precious to us too and we do not want them to suffer irreversible stress. You think love will be enough to get through it all, but I have learned this about loving: it can get you in a lot of hot water.
I just don’t know.