By Frank J Casella
In case you have not heard, Buddy, the Golden-Lab, passed away on February 13th. I would like to share with you a few highlights of his life, and some pictures, as a way to provide (for me) some closure. And you can find a link to pictures below.
Buddy was born in the Fall of 2006, and came to my family in 2007. Our children pooled their money from birthday 's and holiday 's to get him.
Although, there were a few dogs from the shelter before Buddy, they went right back because they ended up not being a good fit for our home. Our good friend, Tracy, who is a dog behaviorist helped us sort things out. Then Grandpa located Buddy, as he is a huge dog lover. So Buddy is a rescue dog, and we named him Buddy because my son always wanted a dog named Buddy .. and boy was he ever!
What we learned as we started to socialize Buddy, is that he had aggression towards women. We agreed that Buddy was suppose to be our dog, so Tracy helped us all to get on the same page and help Buddy to be a ' dog ' again ... and that took a little over a year (and boy did that training help out when we got Strudel, the King Shepherd Dog, as she was a dominant breed).
One highlight from all the training our friend Sherry, who works with American Kennel Club. showed us how to certify Buddy as a Canine Good Citizen Dog. After a few try's, which is normal, Buddy finally was certified. The kids in the neighborhood, who are now all grown up, loved and where always happy to see Buddy very much. And when I would take him to the library and wait outside while another family member was inside, the kids going in and out of the building would stop and love on Buddy. ... he loved every minute of it too .. he no longer lunged at the mom's in aggression .. you could tell he loved being a dog again.
Buddy loved to stay outside all of the time, bathe in the sun, and play with his ball. He also loved to go for long walks and run. The first few years with us, we took him to the dog park. He always loved to run laps on the track, several rounds, and when he got tired ran for the big mud puddle (until Tracy showed us how to keep him out of the mud!).
When we took him for walks at the Wetlands Preserve, Buddy could not stay out of the water. Buddy also loved to play basketball with the children, and often would wait under the basket for the ball to come through the net and bop him in the nose. He was also a good blocker and gave everyone from the neighborhood who played with us a hard time getting to the basket ... he wanted the ball.
Buddy also had a number of health setbacks, like a ruptured ligament in his back leg (a basketball injury), one eye got damaged at the dog park, he also was attacked a few times - once by three Pitt Bull Dogs at the same time. The last few years we thought a few times that Buddy was going to leave us, but he would bounce back and prove us wrong. Our friend Dr. Christie was the best Vet for Buddy, she took the best care of him and helped us do the same in many ways ... especially after Buddy was attacked.
Buddy and I spent a lot of time together, as I have a home office, so he would let me know when he needed to go out, when it is time to go for a walk, and when it's time for food .. .and the time change didn't matter, he was always on the clock. The past couple years Buddy could not get up off the floor, so we had to help lift his back legs .. but once on his paws he was ready to go.
Now that we are dog-less, I'm reminded of one thing 'Boiler Mike', who is the guy who installed our boiler and a/c system said, and that is " a house is not a home without a dog on the floor ". Over the years I have often thought how ' DOG ' spelled in reverse is ' GOD ' and that is no coincidence ... for dogs show us much about unconditional love.
You can find pictures of Buddy here, and I hope they make you smile.
Photo: Dogs and the Sesons of Life - Color Photo Copyright 2019 Frank J Casella
A Golden Retriever Dog celebrates the colorful leaves of the Autumn season.
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