Why Dogs and Food?

Why Dogs and Food?

It's simple. Write about what you love. And what is better than dogs and food? If you are anything like me - and millions of other people - you will relate to and understand the unwavering love I have for my dogs and my passion for cooking - and eating - great food. I hope you will enjoy reading about my day to day experiences with good food and a couple of very special dogs.

Thanks for visiting.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Loving Henry

"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." ~ Anatole France

In loving memory of my sweet Henry.

Loving Henry
George Bernard Shaw said: "Heartbreak is life educating us."  I'm all for education; I just wish it didn't have to hurt so much sometimes.

I lost my beloved Henry on June 24, 2014.  It's been a month already since that sweet boy closed his eyes and soared to the rainbow bridge and still, I grieve.  I still look for that happy smile and those big, bright, brown exotic eyes.  I still wait to hear his 'woo-woo' howl when I walk through the door in the evenings.  But it doesn't come.  He isn't at the door, wagging his whole body, and he isn't even around the corner, lying in his hammock bed, wiggling and woo-wooing because he just can't get up anymore to greet me at the door.  Even Walter, his big brother, lies quietly on the floor next to the place where Henry's bed used to be.  I had to take it away because Walter wouldn't use it and it was a painful, empty reminder - like Tiny's Tim's lonely crutch standing solemnly in the corner by the fireplace.  I would rather look at all the smily, happy photographs all over the house to give me glimpses of Henry's beautiful spirit.

Henry loves his hammock bed
I swear, I have cried so many buckets of tears in my lifetime, I could fill the Pacific Ocean.  I have dealt with a lot of loss in the past year.  I was divorced in September of 2013; I lost Macky, my 22-year old kitty (and my longest companion), on February 14th of this year; and now Henry is gone, too.  It's a lot to wrap my head around and I find myself floating in a deep sea of thoughts and emotions so often lately. I have been donating to many animal rescue causes with Henry in mind, because he had such a generous spirit; and perhaps I can help ease the pain of an animal in need.  I think about getting another dog.  Not to replace Henry, and not because I must have another dog - but for a companion to Walter, who has deeply experienced all these losses, too.  He is such a soulful creature and he seems to be a little lost and lonely after losing almost all his family members and best buddies.  Walter is getting on in age as well, and he doesn't have a lot of energy anymore.  But he is true blue and my devoted companion.  We spend a lot of quiet time together these days.  

It's summer time and I can't help but think about Henry running into the bay to paddle around with that look of pure concentration and rapture!  He really loved to swim!  I think it also helped his joints feel better.  Henry loved life so much.  Every walk we took was an adventure for him.  Every nook and every cranny was sniffed and inspected and every sound was captured and pondered.  He was such a joy to watch; and to be around Henry, was to be truly happy and at peace.

Henry loved to swim.  Smooth as silk.
Henry might have been serious about swimming but he also had a comedic side. Check him out in his Halloween costume here:

Henry as a Mad Scientist.  What a good sport!
When I went to the Denver International airport to pick up Henry after being flown to me from Canada's Kyon Kennels in April of 2003, I could hear his yelps echoing in back of the cargo area before they even brought out his crate.  Everyone was laughing because he had so much energy and made it very clear that he wanted out of that crate right away!  I was more than happy to take him out and hold that little ball of white fluff while I signed the retrieval documents.  He was licking my face and squirming in my arms; and I knew from that moment, that I was going to love him forever.

Look at that sweet, baby face!
As a baby, Henry liked to sleep on his back.  Silly dilly.
I know there are many people who say they will never get another pet because they could not bear to go through the grief of losing another one.  I get that - I really do.  The grief is excruciating.  But if we didn't have the sorrow, we would have never known the joy.  That's the deal, isn't it?

So, I say: Here's to the joy! Here's to knowing that my soul has certainly been awakened because I have definitely known the unconditional love and devotion of an animal.

Here's to loving Henry.

Always watchful and caring
My beautiful boy.

Forever, Henry