Saturday, August 8, 2009

It’s A Dog’s Life

When I first started blogging, I swore my posts would be limited to only quilting.  I have tried to stick with that commitment, but I find that harder and harder to do.  And actually my BFF (best friend forever) does become an intricate part of my quilting most days.  Her name is Bailey and she’s a cockapoo.  The result of a cockapoo-cockapoo breeding done by a local family.  


I have 2 sons that are in their twenties.  Growing up, they each had their own black lab – Duke and Comet.  I am a firm believer that a child should have a dog growing up – if possible,  Those dogs were bonded to those boys.  The summers up at our  mountain home played such an intricate part in our boys’ lives.  blog-dogs Duke spent forever jumping into the lake chasing sticks and Comet would stand on the dock wanting to jump in, but so hesitant.  We would pretend that she was saying “oh no I don’t want to get my hair wet!”.  Eventually she would go in the lake.  They both would jump in the lake and swim to follow our sons when they went out in the paddle boat, climb in and shake.  If ever you have been near a dog when they were wet and decided to shake, you can just imagine the squeals.

This is a block that I made for a memory quilt for one of my boys.  It really depicts the dogs’ personalities.


We hoped that the dogs would live long enough to see our boys go to college.  And they did.  Duke almost made it to 16 years old, which is very old for a black lab.  Even though Comet was 2 years younger, she died one month later.  She died from heart failure, but we say she died from a broken heart – never having known life without her companion. 

The loss of these 2 pets was so heartbreaking for me.  It’s not that they didn’t have a good life.  They had a wonderful life full of love and devotion.  To me, it was the end of an era.  It closed the door on the chapter of my sons’ childhood.    My husband thought , now we are truly free and can travel wherever we want and whenever we want and not have to worry about putting the dogs in the kennel.

The first time that we went to the mountains and I had to pack away their beds and toys, I just couldn’t hold it together.  Life was so lonely without them.  No one to greet you when entering the house.  No barking, no cuddling.  I knew that I could not live without a dog.  My husband was so supportive and said go for it.  I knew I wanted a little dog.  Fifteen years from now, I knew that I would not be able to pick up and carry a sick dog when “that” time came.  My sons said “Mom – don’t you get one of those froo froo little dogs.” 

But why should I listen to those boys?  I wanted the cutest little dog that I could find and one that didn’t shed .  I spent many, many years cleaning up black dog fur.  When things got bad, I called them tumbleweeds.

Thus, the adoption of Bailey.  My life has been transformed.  I call her my  empty nest dog.  We treat her like she is a black lab and she acts like one.  She is always by my side and walks  5 miles with our gang of walkers each morning. She lays staring at the door while I am gone and greets me as if she hasn’t seen me in years! She has been with us for 1 year now and she has stolen my heart.  The black labs were the boys’ dogs, but Bailey is all mine.



  1. Bailey is adorable!! Love the quilt block!

  2. The mental image of the boys and dogs at the lake is tugging on my own maternal strings. That's what I would like for my boys. I just need to wait a few more years. I don't think I can handle diapers and dogs at the same time.

  3. My one son received his dog for kindergarten graduation. It definitely would be hard to housebreak a dog with kids in diapers. But I can tell it's in your future!

  4. I absolutly agree, I think that avery child should have a pet. when I was young I've had a cat, he arrived qhen I was 11, and died last year, when I was 29. people without animals can't understand how sad is to lose a pet

    Bailey is wonderful! *_*


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