Once upon a time, when I was a child, I've read a story written by Rudyard Kipling about domesticating the wolf, which became the dog.
The wild dog, attracted by the smell of food, comes close to a cave where a woman is cooking meat, and asks her to give it some. She gives it a bone and the dog gobbles it up. Then, not satisfied yet, the dog asks for another one, but the woman makes a condition: "Wild creature, coming from wild woods, if you help man in hunting, and if you guard his cave, then you'll have all the food you desire." The dog, won by the promise of food and by the woman's voice, leans its muzzle on her lap and accepts the offer.
I am owner of two huskies. One older, Ledi's, and a younger, Lana's. Living with them made me change the story of my childhood. I would start it somehow like this:
One day the wild dog comes close to the cave. He sees the Woman crying. He goes next to her, and asks her what the problem is. She answers: "I'm so lonely, the others don't understand me many times, hunting and guarding the cave is so hard, I need a friend to help me!". The wild dog feels sorry for the woman, and says: "I, the wild creature, coming from wild woods, I will become domestic and I will stay with you. I will help you hunting and guarding, and I will be your loyal friend either in good times or bad times. In change I'm only asking to share your food and home with me, so I can be with you all the time." The woman, won by the promise of the dog, let him lean his muzzle on her lap, and accepts his offer. From that moment she is not lonely anymore...
I was thinking about what I should tell about my dogs, what can I highlight, and how can I show their caracter. Then I realized, that the best would be to tell you what they mean to me.
When I took Lana from her mother, she was so little. She bore it very bravely and she would cry only in the evenings. Everybody told me that I should leave her outside, and ignore her crying, and in a few days she would get used to it. I couldn't do that. I went outside and I sit next to her. When she saw me, she came to me squeakily. I was sitting on her little blanket, while she was lying in my lap after circling a little circle. She fell asleep in the twinkling of an eye. I was burning the midnight oil, watching her sleep, and was thinking about how naked, how fragile she is, and how much she trusts me: if I am there nothing wrong can happen to her. I think it was the first time I felt that from the moment I took her from her mother it's me being responsible for her. She tought me what it is like to be worried for somebody every moment of the day if she is next to you, or kilometers away.
Now, as I'm trying to catch my thoughts, and I'm looking for a story about them, about how consoling their friendship is, I realize that from the moment they are by me, I am not sad. It is not because I hadn't couses to feel blue... it is because the love that I feel when I look at my dogs. It cleans up all the sadness from my heart, and it smoodges the bad memories. The fact that they wake us up every morning with a lick, making our day, or when they put their head on my chest when I'm watching TV, and sometimes look at me with the look "I'm here, I'm here only for you" makes me only grateful. When she is with me on our long walks, never leaving me, and coming back whenever I'm asking her to, well, that makes me feel I'm valuable to her, and I'm a good person because she is able to love me. All this makes me belileve I am a better person, makes me behave like that, and live like that.
This is what my dogs mean to me...
(This article was published in Nordi 2007/4. XI evf.)