We are a family of animal lovers. Well, my husband is by default. He married an animal lover. As such, we have had a variety of pets over the years. Dogs, cats, guinea pigs, gerbils, parakeets, turtles, a horse. All well-loved and in return, we have been loved well.
The dog who is now part of our two and four-legged family is Quincy, a big black Labrador retriever mix. My son and I saw him at an adoption event nine years ago at PetSmart. Eight months old at the time, he lay in a crate seemingly overlooked by most passersby. We spotted him peering at us, eyes the color of acorns, unassuming. Yet something about him made us stop and take a closer look. He was part of a group of dogs at a local animal shelter scheduled to be euthanized. I have never understood how a beautiful puppy could have ended up in such a predicament. But fate works in mysterious ways and he was destined for better things.
All these years later, as he enters his senior years, he is still a special dog to us, having almost filled an empty place left by our other dog. He has seen our children reach adulthood and leave the nest, bring home spouses and now their children. It is with the babies that we see what a special dog he really is. Like most retrievers, he is very much a family dog. Although he was not around our kids when they were young nor had experience with toddlers, he seems to sense that they are different.
He shows unending patience with my two year old grandson, who likes to lean his head on Quincy and run his fur between his fingers when he is tired. It is quite heartwarming to see them together.
As our family continues to grow, Quincy is adjusting to each addition. We in turn, are helping our grandchildren to treat Quincy with love and respect as he grows older, right beside them.