The loyal Kira
By Laurie Darroch
Poetry is an art form dear to my heart. I was inspired from a very young age by my mother and maternal grandfather. I write my poems in every style and on every subject that touches or inspires me.
I have had poetry published on the web and in numerous books in print. With a few awards and prizes under my belt, and the title of featured poet in two anthology books, I continue to write and strive for more learning and achievement in poetry. I hope to eventually publish a full book of my poems.
I dedicate this poem to the three dogs who have given me unfaltering love and loyalty: Kusje and Kira who have reached the other side and are greatly missed, and Neela, the newest loved family member, who daily keeps me on my toes with her puppy antics.
By Langley Cornwell
My parents let me get a puppy for my 10th birthday. A neighborhood mutt had puppies and I just had to have one. That precious dog was still alive and well when I went away to college. A lot of growing and maturing goes on during that timeframe, and much of what I learned came from the unwavering bond I had with that sweet pup.
From the earliest days of childhood, kids begin to learn about pets. Some children observe pet ownership from afar and others, like me, are given the opportunity to experience it personally. Either way, pets play some type of role in our growing up. If you were a child who enjoyed the privilege of sharing your young life with a pet, you are probably aware that your relationship with that pet taught you a number of different things.
Owning a dog requires an investment of time and responsibility. Our canine friends depend on us for healthy dog food like CANIDAE, shelter, water and plenty of love – at a minimum. This sounds a great deal like what is required to be a parent. When dogs or puppies need you, you have to be there. This is a great way to introduce your kids to the world of taking care of others. Pets are usually a child’s first experience with being responsible for a living thing.
If you have ever owned a dog, then you are keenly aware of the patience living with an animal requires. Dogs can push you to the very edge of sanity and then bring you back again. While dogs are a great joy to raise, you have to go into the situation expecting some trials. Any animal that is young and helpless will make plenty of mistakes along the way. Dogs are no different.
By Linda Cole
Late one night while outside with my three dogs, the sudden presence of a coyote startled us all; my dogs quickly gathered around me. I thought it was because they were scared, but they were ready to protect me. When a dog gives us their trust, the bond we share will never be broken by the pet. The following four dogs illustrate the importance of loyalty, love and a bond that can’t be broken.
When Mari gave birth to three Shiba Inu puppies the morning of October 23, 2004, she had no idea that by the end of the day, she’d be fighting to save her puppies and a human member of her family. That fateful day, a devastating earthquake rocked Japan. The village Mari’s family lived in was hit the hardest and most of the homes collapsed, including the one Mari was in with her pups. Violent tremors, and a leash restraining her, separated Mari from her pups. She struggled to free herself, but the leash wouldn’t budge. As more tremors came, Mari gave a last desperate pull and broke free. She quickly moved her pups to a safe place before racing back into the demolished home.
The grandfather had been in his room upstairs when the quake hit. Mari found him trapped under a dresser. As the old man slowly regained consciousness, she licked his face to let him know she was there. Mari ran back and forth checking on her pups and the grandfather, her paws cut and bleeding from walking over broken glass and porcelain. The grandfather eventually found the strength to push the dresser off and with Mari’s help, got out of the collapsed home.
By Linda Cole
Earning your pet’s trust isn’t a given. You have to work at developing a friendship with your pet just as much as you do with a person. With trust comes respect and bonding, and once a pet gives you their unconditional love, they will never break it. Our pets give us a pure and sincere love for their entire lifetime.
There’s no question in my mind that animals are a lot smarter than they are given credit for. Pet owners who have a strong bond with their dog or cat witness firsthand the remarkable and sometimes even amazing abilities they have. In a study on the loyalty of dogs, researchers had two people sit side by side in a room. One person was the dog’s owner and the other person was a stranger. There were two colored plastic cups turned upside down over a dog treat; when the dog was brought in, both people pointed at the cup beside them. Researchers wanted to see if a dog would follow the pointing finger of a stranger. Each time the dog came into the room, he responded only to his owner and ignored the stranger’s pointing finger. The researchers concluded this shows how much dogs trust their owners.
Loyal dogs will do whatever is needed to protect the ones they love. I had the dogs outside in their pen late one night, several years ago. We had a fresh layer of snow on the ground which made it as still as a mouse sensing a cat. Suddenly, a coyote was standing on the other side of the pen staring in at us. The dogs were nervous and made no sound as they gathered around me as though they were protecting me. I could tell they were nervous, though, and they also wanted me to protect them. But I have no doubt that if the coyote had tried to get into the pen, he would have had to deal with my dogs. Needless to say, we quickly went back inside the house.
By Linda Cole
The bravery and loyalty of dogs fills the pages of history with unselfish acts of heroism. Dog heroes can be mixed breed and purebred, but the one thing they all have in common is a steadfast devotion to their owner. It can be argued that dogs act purely on instinct, but I think they also act on love and recognize when the people they love are in danger. Many dog heroes were rescued themselves by their owner.
Shana, a half wolf/half German Shepherd, was rescued as a sickly two week old pup. In 2006, she was 7 years old and weighed 160 pounds, which came in handy when she saved her owners, 81 year old Norman and Eve Fertig. The couple had been tending to animals on the Enchanted Forest Wildlife Sanctuary in Alden, N.Y. when a sudden winter storm hit in early December. The storm knocked down huge trees at the sanctuary, trapping the Fertigs between two buildings. It also knocked out the electricity.
Temperatures plunged to freezing, and Norman and Eve were trapped outside without warm clothes or shelter. What Shana did next amazed the couple and firemen who made it to the sanctuary the next morning to check on the couple. Shana began to dig through the snow and dirt under the fallen trees and kept digging until she had a ditch dug all the way to the house. She returned to Eve, grabbed her sleeve and slid the 86 pound woman onto her back. Norman grabbed Eve’s legs and Shana pulled both of them through the ditch to their home. Safely inside, she then laid across the couple to keep them warm through the night. From start to finish, it took Shana almost 8 hours to dig a trench 200 ft. long. She was given an award that’s usually only given to humans – the Citizens for Humane Animal Treatment’s Hero’s Award for bravery.
By Linda Cole
I saw a news story the other day about a little dog named Mango that had gotten onto a multi-lane highway. Traffic was at a standstill as Mango’s dad tried in vain to capture the terrified dog. Mango raced around evading capture and finally ran off into a neighborhood. Animal control arrived to help, and the poor dog was at her wits’ end as strangers closed in on her. Finally, Mango’s mom arrived and called to her, and the frightened dog raced into her arms. It brought tears to my eyes as I thought about how confused and scared Mango was. Pets love the sound of our voice, and our scent is the best perfume in the world to them. Our scent can even help lead a lost dog or cat home.
Why do pets steal our stuff? Because our smell is all over everything we touch. They love to snuggle in our beds and clothes. My dog Riley’s favorite place to be while I’m working is on a footstool under my desk. I have a pillow on it for my comfort, but she loves to lay on it and rest her head on my leg. I love it just as much as she does; I know she’s doing it because she likes to be next to me and she can snuggle next to my scent which makes her feel safe.
Our voice is a sweet melody to our pets. Their entire body language changes when we talk to them. My cat Jabbers will roll over on his back and stick his front paws in the air as he listens to me. His eyes are fixed on me. Then he sits up and talks to me. Some of my other cats will join in to see what’s going on. The dogs gather around me with their tails wagging furiously when I talk to them. Some days I feel like I’m a rock star with adoring fans. But then, in our pet’s eyes we are rock stars!
My Siberian Husky Cheyenne was an escape artist. She found ways out of the dog pen or raced past visitors at the front door. She learned how to quickly slip out of her collar on walks. I had to watch her like a hawk. If she got away despite my best efforts, she’d be gone for about an hour before I’d see her slowly making her way out of the woods nearby. When she was running away, my calls fell on deaf ears but coming back, she was worn out from her run. As soon as she heard my voice, her beautiful blue eyes would light up and she’d walk over to me with the most innocent look.