Daily Archives: February 18, 2010

Walking With Penny

Sixteen years ago I wanted to have a dog again. I’d go to the shelter a couple of times a week to see what choices there were. At the time I was living on a 26 foot-long sailboat and was looking for a small dog…small boat, little space = small dog. I also wanted an older dog. They don’t demand the same attention as a young pup. Scratch their belly once in a while to get their hind leg working and they’re happy for the day.

There was one dog that attracted me the instant I saw her, but she was at least five times the size I wanted and she was only a year or two old. When she first saw me at the gate of her cage she immediately came over and nibbled on my fingers when I stuck them through the fencing. She was there week after week that dragged into months. I couldn’t figure out why. Then, one day when I went to check on the new stock there was a sign on her cage saying, “Channel 10 Pet of the Week.” Now, shelters say they don’t euthanize the animals, but they don’t keep them forever, and when I saw the sign I knew it was a last-ditch attempt to get her adopted out. I immediately went to the front desk and claimed Penny.

Everyone who sees Penny think she’s a great looking dog, and she is.

I absolutely believe the reason no one adopted this “great looking dog” is that she was supposed to be MY dog.

She’s 17 or 18 years old now. Arthritis has set in with a vengeance. Three or four times a week I have to lift her hind end into the air so she can get her feet beneath her. From time to time she has bouts of incontinence. But every afternoon around 3 or 4, she wants, no demands, on going for her walk.

We don’t go very far. She only has one speed and though the spirit is willing the endurance is no longer there. It takes us about a half hour to simply make it around the block. Recently I’ve been taking my camera with me. Here in south Florida flowers bloom throughout the year. This is what I see on my walks with Penny.

The recent cold snap colored a lot of leaves

A Gumbo Limbo Tree

Dirty Gumbo Limbo Tree

Staghorn Ferns

Working Lunch

That’s All Folks


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