Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Mankind & His Dog

Chandler sleeps in our bed with us. This was not the original plan. We had started out so sure it would not be this way. The very first night we had him, we suffered through his endless whimpering and whining from his lonely crate with heartbreaking resolve. "This is best", we thought, "that way he'll be used to sleeping alone". Well, cut to night two. After a full day of bonding with him in ethereal euphoria, his first puppy cries stung as I tucked him safely behind his bars and made my way to the bed. I only lasted about 5 minutes tucked under my dogless covers when the voices started propositioning me: "Well, maybe just for tonight he can sleep with us ...". One night became one week which became one month which became ... our dog sleeps with us. It's a fact now. 
Usually as we drift off to dreamland together, Chandler and I basically play silent Cirque du Soleil all night. He'll drape himself across my pillows so I'll slink down lower onto the mattress. When he comes and sleeps dead in the middle of Jay and me, I'll move closer to the edge instinctively. When he dramatically stretches out across the foot of the mattress, I'll bring my legs up as if I'm cannon balling into a pool. We do this all night and I generally am left with vague memories about it the following morning.

But more often than not, his movements rouse me enough where I wake. I'll blink my eyes as I feel his shaggy hair overlaying my entire forehead. Or his neck ever so slightly tightroping across my neck as I rest on my back. Or he'll crawl under the covers, collapse against my body and release a loud huff before slipping off for the duration of the night. And I've truly woken up numerous times to find that my pillows have fallen to the side of the bed and I'm now resting my head right on his rump - which he doesn't seem to mind. 

I fought tears all morning reading about the death of Bretagne, the last 9/11 search & rescue dog. I thought of these hardworking service animals who not only power through the debris of awfulness with a happy spirit but those whose presence at such sites is often comfort enough for the humans assigned the same grim task. I thought of the images of them curled-up sleeping in rubble, resting for their next go at it. I thought of the smiles on the faces of the exhausted firefighters as the reassurance from these canines was just enough to help them move through their tough day a bit better. 
^VIA

And then I thought of my dog's hairy ear, flopped over my right eye as his legs jutted into Jay's backside. And the content sound of them both sleeping away. And I thought of his instant excitement in the morning as we slowly start to wake up and his ability to annoyingly find our mattress-planted faces and try to give us as many kisses as he can even though I'm way too half-dead to appreciate it in the moment. I thought of the time he basically found his sweet spot on a pillow he didn't realize was dangling over the side and he plummeted into Jay's nightstand at 3 AM. He then scurried back up the bed with big doe eyes from his "scary" fall and instantly nestled into Jay's shoulder for comfort and reassurance that he would be okay. Despite my tiredness, I wanted to speak to him and assure him that he will be okay and that we will always be a bit more than okay because we have unconditional, floppy, kissy, snuggly, encircles-us-all-night love from YOU, sweet Chandler.

And I just thought, what a sadder world it would be without dogs - the working ones and the goofy ones.

RIP sweet Bretagne & all the other 9/11 pups.

 photo blog sign-off_zpsnuhefhbr.jpg

17 comments:

Elle Sees said...

Iwas the same way with Charlie. He was crated in the beginning. Now, he sleeps wherever he wants! I don't crate him during the day either, since he tends to stick to the bed or the couch and doesn't get into anything. OMG I couldn't even read that about the 9-11 dog when it came up on FB. I get too sensitive about dog stuff now--something I never would have guessed!

Pat Hatt said...

Would sure be a sadder world indeed without them. My childhood dog slept with me every night, never got a rump in my face though haha now that cat, I've woken up to his arse in my face.

Kate at Green Fashionista said...

Love love love this post! I can't imagine life without my oinking shedding affectionate girl. She is our heart! I'm so sad about the 9/11 rescue dog, but glad he lived a long duggy life <3
Green Fashionista

Mattie @ Northwest Native said...

Our dogs sleep with us too, and that's why I'm so excited for our king bed! Hahaha. One of them sleeps right between us at the head of the bed, and she has suuuper long legs, so when she lays on her side and stretches her legs out, they stab me. They're actually so long I usually have to lift them up, get in place, and put them back down on top of me. Ha! And the other one usually sleeps on my side...and pretty much always ends up between my legs. Before we got our first, we bought a dog bed...which was the most pointless purchase we've probably ever made. :)

I was in a class senior year called Animals and the Law, and my final paper was about service animals. Because animals are considered 'property' so they don't technically have rights, so I wrote about how you can't force a living being to work for you (even though they're happy to do it, I know) and not give them rights! Anyway, the death of any dog makes me so so sad, and hearing about Bretagne was definitely hard. :(

Brittany said...

Oh my gosh. Just read about Bretagne and it's getting pretty dusty in here. Such special bonds, such wonderful friends.

Emily @ Beauty Blether said...

What an awesome post <3
I was trying so hard not to cry when I saw the video of Bretagne this morning. Dogs are literally the best. We didn't plan to have ours sleep with us either, but of course they ended up in the bed too. Problem is they are both 70 lbs dobermans, so it doesn't leave much room left for us humans! haha ;)

SMD @ lifeaccordingtosteph said...

So sad to hear about Bretagne.

I too do the dance all night every night with all three dogs. They rotate a few times a night, and never all at once. MFD took a photo last night and I have to send it to you. LOL

Nadine Lynn said...

It's funny how you never plan to let your dog sleep in your bed, or be on the furniture, or be that dog that has to jump on the guests. Yet it happens. Oh gosh, I cant read a sad doggie story right now!!! I just got done reading a novel with a dog that had a tumor and bawled my eyes out for days. My little Gracie has been with me for 11 years and she is not doing so great right now and I know that in a very short time I am going to have to make a very VERY hard decision and I am trying to put it off but I know it is coming. Dogs are the best animals on the whole planet and I cant imagine my life without them. Gracie has been my little baby and I am going to be devastated when I have to say goodbye.

Emily said...

So sweet! We had planned the same thing with Lola but nope she walks right to the bedroom when she knows it's bedtime. It's hard to say no to those puppy eyes and put them in a crate so she wins most of the time. lol

Ashley @ The Wandering Weekenders said...

Trying to get Dart to sleep in a kennel the first week that we had him was the worst week of my life! All he wanted to do was snuggle with me, and he totally won! But I totally wouldn't change it for the world, I melt as soon as he snuggles up right next to me! That's so sad to hear about the last 9/11 search and rescue dog. I totally agree with you that the world would be so sad without dogs!

The Siberian American said...

Love this post! We were the same way with Skyler! I think we lasted a few months until we thought it wasn't worth it anymore. So sad about Bretagne! You are so right-the world would be so sad without dogs. My dog has helped me so much when Chris has had to work nights!

Kaitlyn Danielle said...

So sweet. I've never heard much about the 9/11 search and rescue dogs. Any fur ball has a place in my heart, so sad. My black lab is the biggest baby ever. If we're in the bed cuddled up, Kansas will squeeze his way in between us. It's the cutest thing ever. If we kiss, he breaks us up by putting his face in between ours, it's so funny. He sleeps in our bed too. He's a mommas boy. When my boyfriend leaves for work in the morning, Kansas will move from the foot of the bed to the top of the bed where the pillow is and cuddle up on the pillow. Can you say spoiled?!

kaitlyn-danielle.blogspot.com

MilitaryPugWife said...

Our pugs sleep with us! We love it!

julie @ jewelswandering.com said...

So sad to see Bretagne pass, what an amazing dog!

George, the DogCat, defo sleep with me. I often wake up to find him snuggling up in my neck and arm. Purring contently. How do I turn that away?

Jaclyn said...

It is sad news about the 911 rescue dogs. They were just as important to the rescues as the people. Too funny about your sleeping pup!! Reminds of our nights when my mush sneaks in. Lol lol

Karrine Beasley said...

Awwww this wants me to drive home right now and give Simba the biggest snuggle ever! I can't imagine a world without dogs. I am constantly imagining a world where I have my own little puppy to fight for bed space with :)

Kristen @ See You In A Porridge said...

it would be such a sad world without dogs. so sad to hear about Bretagne, and all of those dogs. i think - though i can't be sure of course - that if it was me in such a situation and my life was coming to an end - a dog would definitely comfort me. as for chandler sleeping on the bed.. i've never had a dog sleep on my bed because they were always outside dogs, but i don't think i could resist either. they are just so desperate to love you, and how can you not love that?