This year has been hard. I don’t know about you, but I am going through total dog show withdrawal. I miss my dog friends. I miss their dogs. I miss stepping into the ring with my best partner. And as much as I love them, I even miss the breaks from my kids on weekends that I travel. 🙂
On top of the feelings of dog sports withdrawal, we are all dealing with so much more. COVID has affected us all, and most of us have either been sick, known people who have been sick, or lost someone dear to us. Many of us lost income, including myself as a small business owner. We have been unable to do as much with our friends and families. Add to that the political divides and the racial tension, plus just normal life. It’s really hard.
I think sometimes we get so busy that we forget to focus on what’s right in front of us. Life keeps us running here and there, and it’s hard to find quiet moments and just be. We do stuff with our dogs (and our kids) all the time, but how often do you actually sit down and just spend time with them?
My precious golden Toby is almost 15.5 years old. I know exactly how lucky I am that he still is in my life, and I’ve been trying really hard to spend extra time with him. The other night, I sat down on my bedroom floor and he laid his head in my lap and we sat there for quite a while, just enjoying each other’s company. It was so special and a memory that I will forever hold in my heart.
I’ve had lots of friends who have lost their dogs recently, many of them way too young. We rarely know what day will be our last with our precious dogs. Take advantage of the time you have right now. Treat each day like it might be the last one with your furry friend. Because, that day will come. Maybe soon, maybe in a long time, but there will be a last day.
The one advantage to everything we’ve been through these last few months is most of us have a little extra time on our hands. Many of us are spending some extra time at home. Rather than filling up all those moments with projects that will be waiting for us after the dogs are no longer here, take the time now to show your dog how special he or she is.
My goal during this holiday season is to take time to sit down and enjoy both my human children and my furry ones. To spend special time with each one. And no, homeschooling doesn’t count for the kids and training doesn’t count for the dogs. Take a walk with one dog, or have a special cuddling session. Make some special memories that you can remember again and again.
I wish you all a happy and healthy holiday season. I hope that 2021 is a better year for everyone, and that we can get back to doing our dog training classes and showing soon!
-Nicole, Toby, Strive, and Excel