Any animal lover will attest to the fact that our pets are more to us than just companions. Some would go as far as saying they are like children. Ok, with all due respect to my human kids and my husband, I am no exception. In fact, our two Golden Doodles Hopper and Zeke (aka “Bruthasfrumanuthamutha”), and the boss of the K9s world, Standard Poodle Brucie Springsteen (yes, I know), are my family. “Daboyz,” as I affectionately call them, are my buddies, my besties, my confidants, and yes, my best audience.
Da boyz are always available to listen to me rehearse or rant, hanging on my every word – at least until they are distracted by someone at the front door or a piece of dust. Most of the time, they stay at my feet, and all of the time, they escort me from room to room. They patrol the housekeeping, me safe from anyone walking by, the delivery people, or the occasional squirrel having the audacity to climb the tree in the front yard. Oh! And my K9s never let me use the bathroom alone.
They were also my saving grace and were at my side throughout my battle with COVID-19. They stayed close to me, having that K-9 instinct, knowing that something was wrong.
My Coronovirus Journey with K9s
I got sick with coronavirus in early March. It left me bedridden and lethargic for what seemed like an eternity. It was not only painful, but it was also painfully frustrating not to have any energy to do my usual daily activities, which included a twice-daily several mile neighborhood walks with Daboyz. Having the patience of an amoeba, they were continually showering me with kisses, poking me with their wet noses, forcing me to take care of them. It was almost as if they were plotting to get me out of bed. They were selfish and needy, and oh so relentless in making sure I would get up and tend to them! What nerve of those K9s!
Little did I know that this diabolical doggie scheme of theirs was going to be the motivation to my recovery.
Eventually, the fever broke and the aches started to subside. I started shedding the virus. Getting a little stronger every day, I set attainable goals starting with the simple act of taking my guys for a walk. I honestly couldn’t tell you who was happier that first day I put their leashes on! Unfortunately, Brucie the boss Poodle was aging and his health was rapidly declining. He hung in there to see me get better which I believe was his purpose.
A New Normal
It was a very sad day when we recently had to say goodbye. We are never prepared although it’s what we sign up for. There is really nothing like the unconditional love of a loyal dog. I am lucky to have had that experience several times. They enrich our lives so much and enhance it in ways that we truly take for granted – like being forced to get up, get out, and get stronger. Even the simple act of going for a walk together can heal us.
We have since gone back to our daily walks in the neighborhood. This has delighted many of our neighbors who have missed seeing the Doods sans our beloved Brucie. Of course, Daboyz never wavered from their daily house patrol and will always be sure to let me know when the squirrels pose a threat.
Photos by Sheri Nadelman