When our 10-year-old dog died unexpectedly last June, Tamie and I decided we weren’t going to get another one. Raising a puppy is exhausting and saying the final goodbye is too painful. Besides, now that we had grandkids, we needed the flexibility to travel literally anywhere in the world to see them at a moment’s notice. There simply wasn’t enough time on our calendars or room in our hearts for a dog, so we threw out the old chew toys, donated the unopened treats, and stowed away the leash.
His face showed up on Tamie’s Facebook feed last month. The post claimed he’d been found, and therefore likely abandoned, about an hour north of Seattle. Said he was a black lab puppy. No collar. Sweet. Very energetic. And that he tinkled a little when happy.
Tamie and I stared at the picture and read the words again and again. We then reminded ourselves we’d made a pact. That our lives were full. That we were retired dog people.
But that face.
I emailed the shelter and said we might be interested in meeting Rupert. No commitment, of course.
They wrote back and said I should fill out a form on their website and they’d let me know if he became available. A week later, they called and said he was neutered, chipped, and ready for adoption. So we ran to the car and drove 45 miles through rush-hour traffic just to remind ourselves exactly how much we didn’t want another dog.
And that’s how our floors became tinkled in happiness.