It has been a hard week. To lose not one – but two – of our long-time rescue residents and the companion of a devoted volunteer as well.
Balou was a special boy who never got over the loss of his human.
He was profoundly sad, with trust and mental health issues.
He was beautiful, deep and unpredictable, and so we knew he would be staying with us. He felt safe here.
Reacher was adorable and adored.
Imagine a gigantic bunny stuffed in Golden Retriever costume, rolled over, belly up, with paws flopping every which way just waiting for his rub.
He went home and came back twice due to his severe separation anxiety. We couldn’t believe no one could see past his issues to his wonderful self. But we were very happy to care for him as long as he needed to stay with us.
His stay was both too long and too short. Cancer took them both.
That dreaded c-word seems to dog us lately, afflicting too many of the fur kids from our extended Homeward Bound family. Too much at once.
“There is sorrow enough in the natural way
From men and women to fill our day;
But when we are certain of sorrow in store
Why do we always arrange for more?
Brothers and sisters I bid you beware
Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.”
~ Rudyard Kipling
Are those tears falling from the sky?
No. Rain. A sudden, soaking, blessed California rain providing a cool, revitalizing drink for our thirsty plants, trees and souls.
A reminder that there are still unexpected joys in even the most difficult times.
This weekend, there were quiet chats, remembrances, and hugs – but most importantly – there were people.
Amazing people who show up despite broken hearts to walk and feed
snuggle and train –
and teach dogs how to get up on the furniture –
because they depend on us.
For as long as they need us – we are here.
Sometimes joined together by sorrow – more often, joy.
Honoring those we have lost by treasuring each day with those who need our care – at Homeward Bound.
Reacher photos courtesy of Rob Kessel