Friday, June 8, 2012

Our Elderly Toddler

Today marks the end of nine years of our life with Boz. Better yet: the beginning of ten. It's not his birthday, as far as I know, but I think of it that way. It's the anniversary of the day he came to us, when he was already about five years old.

That's not quite right. He didn't come to us. We plucked him out of Boxer Rescue and took him home. He had no say in the matter. He was scared, maybe even terrified. He didn't know who we were or what our house was or what we wanted him to do, but at least we were nice and the house was bigger than the cage and we gave him a soft bed. The food was also pretty good. He could have done without the bath, but that was a deal-breaker.

From the beginning he took the attitude of "Please don't kill me. Whatever you require, I will attempt to obey." He was and still is easy to train. We've never had to do anything but ask. (I've said this before: you can teach an old dog new tricks.) He walks off leash, stays on the front porch unsupervised, and has recently learned to "show me" when I need him to communicate what he wants. He never barks, though I wish he would. He has, or had, a beautiful bark. He might have lost that part of his voice in an illness a few years back. We haven't heard it since then. Like people, dogs go through stuff that changes them.

I'll stop here. We all love our pets and, like parents, we can go on and on about them. I love him more than I can say.

Boz is about fourteen now. I hope he will stay with us long enough to enrich our lives at least another year.


Another dog needs a home. I've posted about Coco on my Facebook page. If Coco's not for you, a variety of pooches await at your nearby animal shelter, wanting only to be your love bucket.

31 comments:

dive said...

Happy Bozday, Petrea!
He's one lucky guy.

Vanda said...

What a handsome fellow!

Paul @ Leeds Daily Photo said...

He is very lucky, even if you make him wear the silly hat. I could never visit the animal shelter, sadly where I live the rule is no pets and the agents office is just across the street.

Jean Spitzer said...

Beautifully said. . . . Happy birthday to Boz.

Kalei's Best Friend said...

I remember when it was our Cairn's b'day..My husband did the same, we even got party hats for the dog next door and gave each dog a cupcake... (hubby's idea)....Yep, u love Boz a whole lot!. And I bet he is forever grateful for the rescue. :-)

Adele said...

Happy Coming-Home Day to you and your sweet boy. He's looking especially tolerant in his birthday hat! How does "show me" work? BTW, I have a Humane Society calendar at work, and just saw that June is Adopt a Shelter Pet Month. Perfect time to talk about Boz's adoption.

BaysideLife said...

Boz is one lucky pooch. Being loved beyond words is a gift he seems to have returned. Happy Arriving-Home-Day, Boz.

Ajumma said...

Oh please DO go on! I love when people talk about their dogs. And yet I don't like when people talk about their kids...Anyway, Boz is a lovely pooch.

Steven said...

Good dog. Good pack to live with. What more could Boz ask for? Enjoy your day.

Petrea Burchard said...

Bozday! Thanks for the new word, Dive.

Vanda! Good to see you.

Paul, no pets at the animal shelter? How oxymoronish.

I'll convey your message, Jean, thank you.

KBF, I'll come clean: I took the pic at someone else's birthday party, where Boz dutifully wore the hat.

Adele, dogs come to you and ask when they want something. I started saying "show me" and walking toward the door or his bowl or his toy to see which thing he wanted. Now when I say "show me," he walks toward the thing he wants.

Bayside, we all lucked out in this deal.

Hello, Ajumma! You made me laugh. Stick around, I tend to talk about Boz a little too much.

Petrea Burchard said...

That's what a pack is, isn't it Steven? It's a family.

Bellis said...

Abby wishes Boz a very happy birthday and looks forward to sniffing for scents with him in Hahamongna soon.

There are so many shelter dogs and cats hoping for a home, and they'll be so grateful. If visiting shelters is too stressful, there's always Craig's List (the Pets section). Many animals posted here need to be rehomed because of divorce, the loss of a house, or landlord policies. (I think landlords are a big reason why so many pets are in shelters.) You can ask the current owner lots of questions and arrange a meeting. It saves the pet the huge stress of being in a shelter, and they'll come to you calmer and healthier. And look how well I did to get Abby!

gretchen said...

happy birthday, boz!

Petrea Burchard said...

Bellis, I understand why landlords don't want pets. Cleaning up after an irresponsible pet owner can be a big expense, and the only reason to own a rental property is to make money, right? You had great success finding Abby on Craig's List.

Thank you, Gretchen! I'll tell him for you.

Pasadena Adjacent said...

Boz's first 5 may have been tumultuous, but his last 9 have been gravy. I can't think of a better home then a quiet one for a guy with a rough start.

Anonymous said...

Bellis - my cousin and family in San Diego skipped out on the house they were renting, and left the Rotweiler, two cats and a litter of kittens behind to starve. Fortunately they (the animals) made their way to a shelter - but from there.....

And on an even scarier note - from the San Gabriel Humane Society

"To all residents who live in Azusa, Monterey Park and Temple City -
your cities have not renewed their animal control contracts with us as of June 1st.

Effective June 25, we will no longer accept stray animals from your cities
as we cannot meet the required hold period"

Yup - next stop - Baldwin Park

Liz

LOLfromPasa said...

Ah...Bless Him.

Kalei's Best Friend said...

@Petrea: Thats ok, u brought up good memories.... and it was fitting since today is the anniversary of when my husband was taken from us...

Irina said...

I hear so much love in this post. All the best to your little family.

Laura Monteros said...

Happy Birthday, Boz! Some folks who adopt children celebrate two birthdays--the real birth day and the day they received the child, or that it was official.

One of my two favorite dogs was four when we got him from Pasadena Humane Society, old dogs are great.

Petrea, did you know that dogs are the only animal that are domesticated enough to follow a pointing finger? To know that the person is actually pointing at something? Well, my cat has learned this, I confess, because he was raised by my two dogs and since it usually involves food....

Petrea Burchard said...

Wow, lots of comments! (I keep threatening to create Boz Daily Photo...)

Thank you, everyone. KBF, I hope a little Boz cheer brightens this sad anniversary for you.

Most of you know a pet enriches your life. And I'm with Laura: old dogs are great. You don't have to adopt a puppy or a kitty. A pet with a few years on 'em is already trained to use the box/go outside and a lot of your work is done for you.

Liz, that's awful news about animal control in those cities. Awful, awful, awful.

Dina said...

Happy birthday dear Boz, and many more.

Susan Campisi said...

Happy Birthday, Boz! You hit the jackpot in your later years. He's so popular, and rightly so. Look at how cute he is in that hat! I may have to get one for Louise - our one-year anniversary is coming up in July - but I don't think she'll be as accommodating as Boz.

altadenahiker said...

Oh, you beautiful birthday boy. No, you're not one to lay your cards on the table. But why wear your heart on your sleeve when it rests so comfortably inside. Those who care, know where to find it.

Katie said...

Such a great Boz photo! Hard to look dignified in a party hat, but Boz pulls it off. And I like the look in his eye that seems to express his anticipation of something good to come. Here's to many more happy Boz Birthdays.

Petrea Burchard said...

Thank you, Dina. Boz sends love to your neighborhood cats.

Susan, Boz accommodates. I even have a picture of him wearing headphones, but I won't post it because he looks so unhappy.

Sweet, Hiker.

Merci, Katie.

Ms M said...

Very touching post.
And a very happy birthday to Boz!

Margaret said...

Sweet Boz. He looks so cute in his hat.

TheChieftess said...

How did I miss this??? Happy Anni-birthery Boz!!!

He's is such a special doggie-soul and so lucky that you all found him!!!

Sunglasses Shopping said...

The same thing is with me also I too have a dog we also celebrate his birthday the day he was brought to our house and now he is 12 years old.It's like all the family member are attached to him emotionally.It happens to everyone who has a pet.
I always pray that he should stay with us forever.

Petrea Burchard said...

I know what you mean, Sunglasses. I know I will outlive Boz, but it breaks my heart to think it.