The perfect send off

Published 11:41am Friday, June 22, 2012

As luck would have it, Patricia caught up with me via cell phone while I was visiting Buck at Dogwood Farms.  She and Josh spoke about bringing Dugan for boarding the next day for a 2 ½ week stay while she and Dan were out of town.  Dan had brought Dugan to check out the facility and was thoroughly impressed.  Dugan was set to be brought in the following afternoon and Patricia asked, “Could you contact Lennie and have him bring Buck over to meet him?”  I had said I would do so when the time came.
“He’s right here now,” Josh said.  “Oh Lennie, I’ve heard so many great things about you” (we were on speaker phone).  “Thank you dear and thanks for thinking of my boy.”  “No thank you, Lennie.”  Josh intervened, “Since Dugan is coming here tomorrow, why don’t we all meet up then and introduce them?”  Patricia agreed it was a great idea as we coordinated when we’d meet.  I gave Buck a kiss then looked up to the heavens, “You’re at work again, aren’t you?”
I was at Dogwood Farms a half hour before Patricia was due and ran into another client picking up her two dogs.  “Are you Lennie?” she asked.  “Yes ma’am I’m here to try to get Buck adopted.”  “I love everything you do,” she said as she gave me a fierce hug.  “Is Buck here?” she asked.  “Yes ma’am, would you like to meet him?”  “Oh could I?”  “Put your kids in the car and I’ll bring him over.”  “My God, he’s beautiful,” she said as Buck put his paws on the fence to see who else was willing to give him attention.  “Don’t tell him that,” I said jokingly, “he thinks that gives him license to be frisky.”  Afterwards Astrid handed me a $100 check that the dear lady donated for my kids.
Patricia and Dugan arrived and the big moment of introduction was at hand midst other dogs in the yard.  Josh had told me that he believed  Dugan would be a perfect match for Buck.  We spoke as the dogs mingled with each other and other dogs, careful that they would not  press too hard vying for our attention.  Patricia was asking all the right questions and Dugan was a perfect gentleman while she loved up Buck.  I got to love up Dugan a bit too, which I enjoyed, I love labs.  Dugan went over to test out the pool and a short while later Buck did the same.  Josh said, “that’s the first time he’s done that.”
All of a sudden Dugan took off in a joyful run around the large play area with Buck trailing, trying to keep up.  “He’ll never catch him,” Patricia said, “Dugan runs like the wind.”  Seeing Buck run flat out like that nearly made me cry with joy.  “Give him time,” I answered, “he’s still only working with three sound legs.”  Patricia, who was also caught up in the moment, smiled, “I suppose so.”
Josh, Patricia and I all agreed that we would let Buck remain at Dogwood Farms during Dugan’s 2 ½ week stay to become playmates and even potential kennel mates.
I’m often praised for my special cases, which I appreciate, but after seeing all that’s involved with cases like Buck and many others like him, I’d like to loosely quote St. James with a Lennie twist.  “Rightly or wrongly, words can be used to teach, but it is only by your deeds that you will be judged.”  I’ll see you all in a few weeks, in the meantime, God bless you all and thanks for listening.

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