I’m already feeling that “holiday buzz,” during which it’s easy to fall into feeling pressured about the special dinners and the houseguests and the gift list. I’m not immune, but one of the ways I try to counteract it is to stop and savor the multiple things that I am thankful for. Here’s my own list, at least as it relates to my life with animals. I will read yours with pleasure and gratitude when I settle down several times a day with a cup of warm tea, and Tootsie snuggled on my tummy.
I am grateful for Maggie’s ridiculous postures on the couch when she tries to seduce us into rubbing her belly for yet another fifteen minutes. Every time she goes all bendy on us, turning her body into something resembling a furry paperclip, Jim and I can’t resist laughing.
I am grateful for Tootsie’s responsiveness to her recall cue, so that we can take her outside and finally, after seven years in a prison cell, give her some freedom and autonomy.
I am grateful that the huge lump that was excised an hour ago from in between Willie’s toes is probably a cyst instead of a tumor. Yes, it’s true that it looked a lot like the malignant tumor that was removed from his uncle’s leg years ago, but I’m going with the cyst diagnosis for now. I am grateful that a martini tonight might help me concentrate of the cyst probability.
I am grateful for the support of my super agent, Jennifer Gates, who as I write is shepherding my memoir through the world of high powered publishing. Jennifer is one of the best things that has ever happened to me—The Other End of the Leash would never have happened without her, and she has been even more essential to me while I worked on my memoir. Stay tuned, I might have some news about that soon (paws crossed all around).
I am grateful for my friend and partner Jim in a million ways, but I’ll focus now on all the times he read drafts of my memoir and gave me insightful feedback. I am a lucky woman.
And, from the bottom of my heart, I am grateful to you, dear readers, who enrich my life and allow this fascinating, global conversation about two of the world’s most interesting animals—people and dogs. In addition, I’d be amiss if I didn’t mention that there is a sale going on now on my website; I hope it allows some of you to stock up. (I have always resisted commercial comments on this blog, but my staff feels the need to remind me that, sometimes, people appreciate being told.) Think of it as a thank you for supporting the perspective that our relationship with dogs should be a joyful and cooperative one.
I look forward to cozying up and reading what you are grateful for right now. I hope you and yours have a long list.
MEANWHILE, back on the farm: It’ll be interesting keeping Willie’s paw dry and clean for the next week or so. The incision has to stay open to drain, and it’s a muddy mess outside now. We’ll get creative with socks and vet wrap no doubt. I’ll keep you posted. Luckily he doesn’t seem to be licking it much, but I’ll have to keep a close eye on it. He is not a dog who would quickly learn to tolerate a cone, but I have one of the ‘neck roll’ types that I can use if need be. I’m going with socks and vet wrap when we’re inside for now; we’ll see how it goes.
Willie is not grateful for the sock: