Yesterday Sunny passed away. He was only a dog, but very special. So today I want to share a story I wrote a few years ago, but they're Sunny's words. This blog is longer than the ones I usually write, but if you've ever lost a pet you loved very much, or not, maybe you'd like to read Sunny's story, A Canine Memoir.
My name is Sunny, and I'm ten years old. I was adopted when I was young. People say I'm a dog, but I don't buy that. When I try to join my family, Lee and Ginny, at the dinner table, they give me a stern look. "Sunny, you're a dog," Ginny says, pointing to a corner in the kitchen. "You have a nice bowl there on the floor where I put fresh food and water for you every day." So that's supposed to convince me?
While they're eating, I rest my chin on the table and look at them with my sad, brown eyes. I think they feel sorry for me, because they give me a piece of food and a peanut butter cookie for dessert. I love peanut butter, and I refuse to take my medicine unless they wrap it in peanut butter. I don't think dogs are smart enough to pull that one off.
I have long blonde hair, not very masculine for a boy, but I think my color is why they call me a Golden Retriever. I slobber a lot. I can't help it though. It's just my nature. They get annoyed with me when I demand attention, but it gets lonely being an only child. When company comes, I get my bone from my toy box and take it to the guests. They seem to like that, and they pet me until Lee tells me to leave people alone. You'd think they'd be glad to have me there, at least as an interesting topic of conversation.
Lee and Ginny have strict house rules. I can't go outside the fenced-in back yard, and I'm not allowed upstairs, especially at bed time. But when Lee's sister, Nonnie, dog-sits...ugh, I hate that word...she lets me sleep by her bed. Then I don't have to be downstairs alone in the dark. What if a burglar broke in? I like to see Nonnie come over, but I'm always glad when she leaves, because they let me go out front while they say goodbye. That's where I find the best smells. Usually when I'm taking a nap, they get me up and put me outside to water the bushes. They don't need to tell me. I know when I have to go. I'm not dumb.
I guess I shouldn't complain about my family. They take good care of me. Ginny brushes me and puts medicine on my skin bumps. The Vet says the bumps are old age, but I resent that, because who wants to be called old? Ginny and Lee throw the ball in the back yard, and let me chase it. I used to wear them out with the game, but now twice around the yard, and I'm pooped...but I'm not old. They let me chase squirrels and lizards, because they know I'm kind and wouldn't hurt 'em. They also let me drink water from the kitchen faucet. I don't like it though when they wipe my mouth with paper towels so I don't drip water on the floor. One of my favorite things to do is in the evening when I get my bone and we all go down into the den and watch TV together. They don't ask me what I want to watch, but I like their shows just fine. Ginny usually hangs her arm over the edge of the sofa, and rubs my back. Yep, I know they love me.
A few months ago some people brought Mazie over to meet me. They said she's a Golden Retriever like me. At first she wasn't friendly...kind of snooty. She put her tail and ears up, and pranced around the yard with her nose in the air. Huh. Well, I'm a patient guy, so I just waited, and pretty soon, she came around. I ended up liking her. Now Lee and Ginny tell me she's coming back soon, and they're prepping me to become a father. I'm not sure what that means. They say it's something good, and I'll like it. But it seems to me father's have a lot of responsibility, and I don't think I want any part of that. I have enough trouble keeping up with my own bones.
When I think about my life, I guess I've got it pretty good. In fact, some of the stories I hear from down the street make me happy I'm blessed with the family I have. They're realy good people. They can't help it if they don't know I'm one of 'em.
We'll miss you, Sunny. Wait by the bridge, and someday we'll join you and walk across together.
Marilyn (Aunt Nonnie)