Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Choosing a companion for life

When I chose Major -- at six weeks of age -- I was fortunate to have the opportunity to select one from fifteen. The pups were from two pedigree German shepherd litters born within one week of each other, in Mitchell outback Queensland. And I had first pick!

I wanted a male, so that narrowed the field. I wanted intelligence, eagerness to please and relaxed confidence. A series of tests reduced the numbers back to three. Any pup who wouldn't lie on his back on my lap, without struggle, was put back with 'the mob'.

Sitting on the grass -- with the chosen three -- I played, cuddled and watched. When Major crawled up my lap and then gazed intently into my eyes, I knew he was the chosen one. Scooping him up I placed him on his back and stroked his tummy. Once again, his dark eyes met mine.

Now, whenever I see a Major lying on his back, which is often, I'm reminded of how I chose him. Major is the master of relaxed confidence.

Del, on the other hand, never lies on her back. She would feel too vulnerable. The photos show Del and Major asleep in our bedroom here in Mitchell. With Katie Siamese asleep between Doug and me, with her head on my pillow, and Del and Major close by, our family is snug and secure.

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