Every time a friend’s dog has to be put down, they remind me to “hug your dog.” I do that, many times a day, but I realize that I should also be more aware and appreciative of the small but important moments of connection between Kunga and me that happen fleetingly. They mean a lot, and I will miss them terribly when he is gone one day.
I love waking up to a snuffling blue nose in my face and the sight of a wagging tail. I love how Kunga follows me around the house and settles down wherever I am, not for petting but just to be there. His deep, contented groan of happiness when he finds just the right patch of sun or snuggles into his cushy bed always makes me smile. He makes me feel safe when he hears someone at the door and starts barking like mad, but won’t leave me to go to the door unless I get up, too. He makes me laugh when he glares at the vacuum, knowing he’s not supposed to bark at it but unable to believe it might not leap up and injure one of us. It’s amazing to come home and find, every time, a whiskery face huffing at me through the glass on the front door, excited to have me back safely with the pack.
I’m writing it all down to remind myself to spend a moment of appreciation for the love of a good dog.