Their brother Luke will tell you that our beagle Cricket and golden retriever Sheba are tough girls. They don’t take any flack from their little brother.
It’s not just Luke that is learning how to be tough from his sisters. When we posted Sheba’s last tip for Living Life to the Fullest, our longtime reader and blog friend, Jan, who writes The Poodle and Dog Blog commented “I feel bad for anyone who doesn’t think they can learn a lot from a dog.” I’ve shared a lot about how amazing Sheba has been as she fights cancer, and how it barely slows her down. I was thinking about that comment even more the other morning when watching Cricket try to run out the door to follow her siblings in pursuit of maybe a chipmunk, or some mystery sight or smell that we mere humans never seem to see.
Since Cricket has been slowed down by the arthritis in her back knees, she can’t get around like she used to. But she doesn’t let it slow her down much. When she’s having a good day, she can run pretty well on flat ground in a straight line (and it’s so fun to watch the sheer joy of it), but if you add in a step as in what’s outside the door going to our patio, she has a little trouble. She stumbles on to her side when trying to maneuver that step. She gets back up. She stumbles again when trying to negotiate the small hill going into the yard, and then maybe once more when trying to turn to follow Luke. Each time she just gets back up. She doesn’t whine, she doesn’t cry, she just gets up and keeps going. She doesn’t hurt herself when this happens, and she’s not embarrassed. Heck, my hubby is right when he says that this bothers me far more than it bothers Cricket.
Here’s the other thing about her: playing ball was her favorite thing in the world, it was her obsession. Now she’s only able to chase the ball a few feet and even then only a very few times. She seems to mostly know her limitations, and she accepts this. When she’s had a few throws and knows it’s been enough, she just picks up her ball and goes into the house to find a comfy spot to lie down with it.
Yes, we can all learn a lot from that. The Dadz and I are aging ourselves and sometimes we find we can’t do things we used to (or it just hurts more!), and trust me, we don’t take it that well. Heck, if I tried to run across the yard and fell down, I’d probably just sit there and cry, not just because of possible pain, but mostly in sheer frustration. Yes, you can learn a lot from a dog, and I’m learning new things every days with my girls as they age. Life can be tough, but when it knocks you over, you need to just pick yourself up and carry on.
Please come back tomorrow for a huge celebration and giveaway!
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Callie, Shadow, and Ducky's Mom says
Shadow can’t keep up with Ducky like she used to, either; but it bothers me a whole lot more than it bothers Shadow. Watching her age, unable to just jump up and go like she used to really tears at my heart some days. But, as long as the vet keeps telling me she’s as healthy as she is happy, I don’t really worry too much. She still TRIES to keep up with Ducky for the first few seconds, and then just goes back to doing “whatever” – no complaints, just a smile. I try to be the same way. My mom was like that, especially after her mastectomy. She fought the cancer like nobody’s business, and kept a great attitude about it. Yes, she was scared at times – who wouldn’t be?! – but strangers never knew it, and I didn’t realize it back then either.
Your Mom sounds like a very brave lady, Sue, and I bet you take right after her. ♥
2 Brown Dawgs says
Sweet Cricket and Sheba are the best.
Sand Spring Chesapeakes says
Girls are tough! Nellie at 12 is slowing down and she will fall over or crash to the ground on our slippery floor when the other dogs knock into her. She keeps on trucking along.
It makes me feel better to know that the falling over is probably a normal part of aging, arthritis or not. I know our beagle Kobi used to do it a lot too. He would also just get up and keep on going!
Dolly the Doxie says
My mom would be in tears seeing Cricket fall. And yes, she’s aging too she can barely get up the stairs and we live on the second floor. Love Dolly
There are definitely times it puts me on the verge of tears. Even more so when she goes back into the house with a ball in her mouth though. 🙁
Incredible examples of living life to the fullest 🙂
M. K. Clinton says
This post was so full of joy. I hope that when my boys start slowing down that I learn to accept it with a smile instead of a tear. Beautiful post.
It’s tough not to be sad, and to worry about how Luke will do without his sisters. I try to remind myself that there will be time enough for tears, and to just enjoy the happy times now.
The Island Cats says
It’s good to see them doing well and enjoying life…and not taking any flack from Luke…despite their issues. 🙂
Oh yes! Both the boys are slowing way down these days but there’s no complaints. Unlike me who whines at every little ache. I’m trying to just suck it up and enjoy what we can together!
Two French Bulldogs says
You Gotta always remind those kids who’s boss
Lily & Edward
Dogs never cease to amaze us at every age.
Dogs don’t get hung up on stuff like humans do. Katie fell a lot the last year she was with us. Mom would sometimes cry. As her issues go worse, she sometimes needed help to get up, but she did it gracefully, and kept right on going as if nothing had happened. Mom was always amazed. Even when she couldn’t walk very far, she still insisted on pushing herself to the limits to make it to places she wanted to go to. Pretty amazing what we dogs can do.
easy rider says
I agree with you… we often worry more than our dogs do… but that’s because we love them soooo much :o)
It can be a challenge to be a boy with two sisters… we saw that at our neighbors… their son joined the navy and his mother was full of sorrows… but he said no ocean nor storm can be as dangerous as growing up with two sisters :o)
Ha, my brother grew up with three sisters, and I’m pretty sure he’d say the same thing!
The Daily Pip says
I absolutely agree. When our dog Pip was in the final stages, we took him up to Northern WI (his favorite place) and I felt sad that he could no longer run around and jump in the river. But truthfully, he was just happy to be with us, smelling all the scents of the woods around him. He didn’t much care that he couldn’t run around – he was just enjoying the moment in his favorite place.
It seems like dogs are just so much better than we are at accepting things as they are. We’ve only had one other older dog before this. Three of our first dogs died at young ages. Our beagle Kobi taught us a lot about seniors, and he was so dignified right up until the end. He enjoyed his slow meandering walks and that’s all he asked for.