Let me start by saying I don't believe in ghosts.
We've lost three wonderful dogs this year. Tsar was a character! He was a loner in a large pack. He needed space and though he was a big dog, he would let out high pitched squeaks when any of the others invaded his personal space. The others all learned to respect those squeaks and give him room.
He was also quite an accomplished singer and would throw back his head and howl on command often causing the rest of the pack to join in.
He would sit beside me at breakfast and watch my bagel. When I was getting close to finishing it, he'd nudge my arm to remind me that he also liked bagels, especially with cream cheese spread on it.
He enjoyed playing by himself and one of his favorite toys was his big yellow duck.
Tsar died in April. In July Sebastian turned up on our doorstep and joined the family. The two dogs never met, BUT
Sebastian likes to remain apart from the crowd and now issues high pitched squeaks to warn off anyone getting in his personal space.
He has started coming up to me at breakfast and nudging me for my last bite of bagel.
He has a favorite toy, the big yellow duck.
Saturday at the vet's office, minutes after Sky died, Sebastian threw his head back and let out a howl. It made the hair on my neck stand up. It was so sad.
Samba was an accomplished counter surfer. She started at an early age. We left her confined to the kitchen when she was only three months old and couldn't reach the counters. No problem, she proceeded to push a chair over to the counter, jump on it and snatch some biscuits. She had some impressive successes including a container of Ben and Jerry's and a whole roast turkey.
Sebastian has never walked into the kitchen. I don't know if it's because he's afraid of slipping on the tile floor or if his first family taught him to stay out of the kitchen. Several times I've tried to coax him into the kitchen, but he stops at the door, sits and wags his tail at me.
So, imagine my surprise last week when Rob and I returned from saying goodbye to Samba at the vet's office to find Sebastian in the kitchen, his front feet planted on the counter, finishing Samba's uneaten breakfast.
Samba and Morgan were best friends and spent a lot of time grooming each other and whispering to each other.
Sebastian, who has never paid much attention to Morgan, this week has been licking her face and walking up and down the stairs with her. Morgan is slow because of her age and her knee injuries. The other dogs fly past her on the stairs, but Sebastian walks very slowly beside her.
Sky loved to play ball. You all know that I was searching for a replacement ball for him just before he died. The people at Sergeant's sent a little soft ball that he carried around for several days. Yesterday Sebastian picked up the little ball and has been carrying it and tossing it in the air and catching it, just as Sky used to do.
Each of our dogs has his own place where he or she gets comfy in the evening when Rob and I settle down to watch Tv and I pick up my stitching. Sky always stretched out beside my chair and I would have to step over him if I got up. Last night when I went to stand up I had to step over Sebastian who was sleeping in Sky's spot.
He knows that Rob and I are sad and comes over and rests his head in our laps. He's a very sweet dog and I'm sure he's just trying to help us in whatever way he can.
It's a difficult time for all of us, human and canine.
As I said before, I don't believe in ghosts. And yet.............