Some time ago, I read a morning routine post in which the blogger described how she started the day off by cuddling with her dog. She said that after her husband got out of bed to get ready for work, their small dog would creep up and lay on the vacant pillow. As they gently woke up, they would stare into each other's eyes, side by side, and every time she pet him she knew her dog was thanking her for having rescued him and for giving him such a wonderful life. It was a very sweet story.
Here's how it goes in my home: soon after sunrise, Charlie wakes up and pads around the apartment, nosing at my hand and grumbling at me until I take him out to the courtyard for a first pee. Then, when we get back inside, he jumps up onto the bed and either curls up into a little ball or stretches his full Lab length across the mattress. On the weekends - or on weekdays if Charlie's roused me before my alarm - I get back into bed and drowsily stroke his fur until it's really time to wake up, at which point Charlie stealthily inches up toward the pillows so he can yawn loudly in my face. We look into each other's eyes, and I can hear him thinking:
You're welcome. I rescued you, and everything you do for me is payment for how wonderful I make your life. You're welcome. Now, let's get up and you can show me how grateful you are. I will bother you with my love until you get out of bed. Okay? Good. You're welcome.Happy Gotcha Day, Charlie. Thank you for rescuing me two years ago!
(See more favorite Charlie posts here: A New Addition, First Anniversary, My Dog / My Toddler, Birthday Weekend.)