Sometimes I wish I were different. I am by nature a sober and introverted dog. Perhaps because I never had much affection in my early years, I do not expect much now.
I have been at Asherpark for over a year. During that time my manners have improved. I have learned to sit and wait for my meals, not to mark in the house, and to endure the indignities of a bath.
When Ash and Tess are loud and boisterous, I seek a quiet spot behind the couch. When visitors come to the house I greet them without barking.
I have come to expect a daily car ride. Each time the back door opens I race to the garage in hopes that we will go somewhere. I admit at times I am deliberately disobedient, forcing my way past people and dogs to be first in line at the car.
I can no longer spring into the car so someone always helps me. I put my front feet on the bumper and await my lift. How I envy Ash, who literally flies into the back of the wagon.
At first I was nervous and whined when we went for a drive. I know it was annoying, but I could not stop myself. Over time I became more comfortable and now drowse on the big dog bed with Ash.
On a few rare occasions I have invited Tess or Ash to play. This seems to delight the people, who encourage me to continue. But my frivolity is short lived and my sober countenance quickly returns.
Only Ash has the gift of laughter. He among us three dogs is the only one who can make mom laugh. How I wish I could be more like him.
Ash has so many nicknames: clown prince, jester, Ashman, flyboy. His names reflect his joyful spirit. Ash is all things bright and wonderful. Ash is young, healthy, happy, confident, funny, and charming. I am old, dreary, worn out, tired. It’s a wonder that anyone wants me.
Yet everyday the people show me that they love me. They put drops in my eyes and ears and give me special food so I won’t scratch myself. Mom says beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Each night she leads me to my bed. She tells me I am beautiful and whispers that she loves me. Though I find it hard to believe, I will gladly take it as true. I am grateful for the gift of acceptance.