June 26, 2010

Living on

The other day somebody from work mentioned she had been checking out Rory's blog and in particular the pictures from Kika the Ridgeback's birthday party. She said that she couldn't tell any of the Ridgebacks apart, that they all looked the same to her. I didn't give it a lot of thought - to me each Ridgeback I come across is unique and distinguishable in some way from all the others.

But sometimes, there are striking similarities. And I don't just mean coat colour. Or the ridge. This morning at the dog park we came across ridgeless Loo and wheelchair-bound Milo. Even from a distance Milo reminded me of Seth, and I said as much to Norm. As we got closer the resemblance grew stronger. It was more than 10-year-old Milo's greying muzzle. It was the overall look. The same curious but calm eyes and expression. Same broad chest. And the disposition - unfazed by all the hoopla Rory and Loo were creating with their chasing and crashing. Milo was in a dog wheelchair because he has degenerative myelopathy and although he wasn't running and wrestling (which an older Ridgeback wouldn't do anyway) he was standing his ground and taking everything in. As we soon found out through conversation with Milo's owner, it turns out Milo and Seth were from the same breeder, same dam but different sire (though Milo's sire was also Seth's half brother so I wonder if that makes Milo and Seth 3/4 brothers?). Whatever. I was happy and in awe and I spent a considerable amount of time petting Milo and simply staring at him. Norm and I did of course continue to make polite conversation with Milo's owner, but our attention was on Milo until I figured we should probably keep moving. As we walked away, both of us were in need of something to dry our eyes. Spending that time with Milo was so exactly like being with Seth that it was like he came back to the park to check up on us. Thanks for that, Old Man. We miss you. And thank you Milo for putting up with two total strangers who wanted nothing more than to spend the entire day with you at the park.

No comments: