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Monday, November 30, 2009

On a Lark



Meet Lark.

He is one and every bit a toddler.

He is more affectionate and sweet than any pet I have ever known. Truly.

He is an 18 pound beagle/corgi mix. This means that we are part Charlie Brown, part Queen of England.

We got him on a lark.

The SPCA had given him his moniker.

He is aptly named.

Did you see that face? Those ears? The ever-so-slight cock of his head?

While Deal is the self proclaimed animal lover, Bird has turned out to be the real Dr. Doolittle. All he wants to do is sit next to Lark with his hand or head in contact with his new pup. Deal loves when he gets Lark time, but I'm afraid he is feeling pangs of jealousy when we are all home together cooing over him.

Lark is still getting used to us. He is the consummate lap dog who revels in our presence. He is sweet, affectionate, peaceful, and gentle. All the things we want our companions to be yet rarely are at one time. Lark is humble, grateful, pensive. My friend Lisa noted that those eyes are filled with a dollop of trepidation and a dose of mischief. He is not a banshee who insists on hopping from lap to lap. Lark is much too loyal for that.

The boys are having a grand time taking turns walking Lark, though Deal has some leash skills to hone. He's only four so I'm not being hard on him. In the two days Lark has been a part of our family, we have already spent even more time together, gabbing on walks, frolicking in the yard, snuggling on the couch. I'm certain the novelty won't wear off. This kind of love, while novel, doesn't get stale.

I remember Skip and Toto and Sambeau and Adam from my childhood. Dogs who graced our home when I was a kid. Each one mysteriously disappeared, and all these years later I have no idea the fate they met. We weren't dog people. We weren't pet people. Hell, we were barely kid people. I am thrilled to share the joy of a pet with my boys.

They are too young to really remember my beloved Casey and Capote, the cats I had for 16 years. Bird and Deal remember that they used to hide under foot when a storm blew in, and that they were our meteorologists foretelling wind gusts and thunder before we even heard a thing. The boys know I get weepy time to time, and that reading "Cat Heaven" is cathartic. I never even blogged about finding Casey in the guest bathroom, curled up as if she were napping from a tuna juice hangover. I'm still numb from saying goodbye to Capote, his liver failing, his weight dropping. It's still too painful to conjure up the words to do them justice.

And now, more than a year since Casey's passing, I am filled with love again. I am admittedly facing Guilt just a tad. I don't want my Casey and Capote thinking they are replaced, for that is impossible. All this time my heart gaped a tish, pulled at the corners from losing my sweet kitties. Bird and Deal are painfully aware of that. They know how much I loved having a pet. They know that Mac Daddy grew up with dogs. They know that pets graced our lives once upon a time.

What they don't know is how our house was filled with love when pets shared our walls. I knew unconditional love from my pets. And I'm hoping Lark will in turn teach Bird and Deal that lovely lesson.

"The dog was created specially for children. He is the god of frolic." ~Henry Ward Beecher

PS
We adopted Lark from the SPCA. I urge you to save a pet's life too. Your home and your heart are the best gifts in the world. And your home and your heart aren't full until you let a pet share a piece.
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14 comments:

Jen L. said...

How wonderful! I love him. Your boys are at such perfect ages for their first dog, too. We're going to get one when Dean is 5. Lark is awesome. I look forward to seeing his face many more times here. Congrats! (and good for you for being a "rescue mom!")

colby said...

We adopted both of our dogs and they have been a great part of our family. Zander shows his love for them in his own way. They are a great addition to a family. Enjoy

Marty, a.k.a. canape said...

Oh my. He is so incredibly cute. I can totally understand why Lark came home with you.

We came home with a big chocolate lab on a lark two years ago - right before my Bird was born. It was crazy insane timing, but he has been a wonderful addition to our family. We'll never know what he went through before he made it to the shelter, but we know that he's grateful to have a forever home and a big sofa to lounge on.

Naomi said...

He's a looker. I hope you have a long, happy life together.

Ree said...

He's beautiful. Congratulations on the addition to your family!

And the SPCA thanks you.

Jeanne said...

Congratulations, he's precious! We have two rescue dogs and they have made our lives richer by coming to live with us. Your boys will not only learn more about unconditional love, but about patience, consistency, and responsibility too. And in a very fuzzy way.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Congrats on your puppy! He looks very sweet--and sounds like your boys adore having him!

Magpie said...

Aw, he's cute.

Mocha Dad said...

We have a beagle too. She's 2 and also behaves like a toddler

DCUrbanDad said...

Oh my that is one cute little puppy. Ahhhhh puppy breath.

Deb said...

Oh, Lark! Look at those velvet ears. Forever friends. I really don't have words for how wonderfully important our dog is to our family. I'm so glad you found yours. Oh, Lark! (Great name too!)

Scary Mommy said...

It's amazing what a dog can do for a family. He sounds like a perfect addition!!

justquirky said...

Oh I love him. Two good, loyal, sweet breeds. I rescued my Gertie too. It's the best way to get a pet. Congratulations on your new family member!

Caroline said...

I. WANT. ONE. No really, I saw the pic of Lark while we were away with family and it could not have melted my heart more. Meanwhile, our kids were falling fast and furious for the 3 dogs that were at Thanksgiving too. Two of which were SPCA pups and the sweetest sweeties ever. I think we're going to wait until our boys are a little older (and I have a little less to corral) but... I WANT ONE. Just like Lark. He is utterly adorable. Congrats!