Surrogate Children

Having dogs really is like having kids.

Sit still in a room, and the dogs find a cozy spot to lay. Unless it’s close to meal time. Or time for a walk, snack, mail run, etc. They are creatures of habit, too. Meg has her routine down, and you’d better stick to it.

Weed the flower beds, and the dogs investigate the flowers, too.

Go into the bathroom, and God forbid, close the door, and the dogs wait anxiously for you to emerge. Don’t close the door and they join you, of course.

Make a phone call and the dogs suddenly become noisy and/or playful.

Relax on the porch, just sitting, watching the world go by, and the dogs do the same.


Not that I am complaining. It’s just that the parallels humor me.

“Dogs are our link to paradise. They don’t know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring–it was peace.”
― Milan Kundera

I can’t imagine life without dogs. Really.

Seeing these images this morning, which were shot at the end of May, is what inspired this post. I’d gone out into the yard to capture some flower shots and, of course, the dogs followed. They apparently wanted to look at the flowers, too.

Meg (age 14)
Meg (age 14)


K (age 7)
K (age 7)


Belle (age 6)
Belle (age 6)

Meg, K, and Belle. “Old Girl,” “Middle Girl,” and “Little Girl.”

How odd it would be not to have them around.

Meg’s health is slowly failing. She’s deaf, has arthritis, some strange problem with her biliary tract, which we keep under control with a strict low-fat diet, and her muscles are weakening. She could be with us for years still. Or something catastrophic could happen and take her sooner. I hate to think of that day.

"What are you looking at, Mama?"
“What are you looking at, Mama?”

For now, I’ll just enjoy all of them with their silly little quirks. And continue to marvel at their insatiable curiosity…

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