A Dog’s Life


This is my black lab, Berkeley. He’s a good boy. We acquired him through Freecycle, a network of yahoo groups dedicated to trying to keep stuff out of the landfill. If you have something that has lost its usefulness for you, you can list it on the Freecycle in your area, and someone who wants it emails you back. It’s quite handy for getting rid of stuff you don’t need anymore. And believe me, Freecyclers take anything!

Well, it wasn’t that Berkeley had outlived his usefulness, is was that the couple who got him from another lady, who had gotten him from the animal shelter, realized that with such a big, boisterous boy, they needed to be home more than just a couple of hours a day. So they listed him on Freecycle and we went and checked him out. And obviously fell in love. Well, David didn’t fall in love, but he acquiesced.

Berkeley, which was the name he came with, (only it was spelled “Berkley,” after the sports-fishing equipment company; we changed it to match the city near where I grew up and where my parents went to
college) is a big, boisterous boy. He loves, loves, loves to play fetch with a ball. If he didn’t get so hot, he’d play it for hours. When he gets to fetch in the swimming pool, he lasts a lot longer. Here he is leaping out of the water to catch the ball. He’s really good at it.

Another thing I love about Berkeley is that he loves my kids. He lets them do anything to him. They lie on him, put hats on him, use him as a pillow, and he loves it. Here’s our friend Gabe using Berkeley as a pillow. Notice how much it seems to be bothering Berkeley.

When the kids leave for school in the morning, he barks as if it’s the end of the world. When he goes to school with me to pick them up, he’s a kid magnet.

Whenever they go outside, he is desperate to go with them.

When they’re gone, he pines for them. One day, he slept in the boys’ room on abandoned clothes while they were gone at school.

He gets along really well with other dogs, too. His best friend in the neighborhood is the black lab across the street, Sebastian. Though we don’t let Berkeley out off leash very often, Sebastian gets to run free when his people are home, so he’ll sometimes come over to visit.

Yes, there’s a lot of hair on our floors; yes, he put scratches on our brand new windows barking his fool head off at a squirrel; yes, our backyard won’t win any yard-of-the-month awards anytime soon. But just look at that sweet face. I can forgive a lot when unconditional love is given.

Thankful today for:

81. dogs

82. pizza

83. the confidence people have in me

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One thought on “A Dog’s Life

  1. Dogs and kids go together like peanut butter and jelly! Today Levi was so excited to pick Mocha up from her doggy day care after I picked him up from his daycare. It was so cute. And Berkeley is a good boy!

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