Monday, September 21, 2015

Mike and Ike--Am I Worthy?

I'd like to introduce you to a very special member of our pack, my husband Mike. He's agreed to join in and share his thoughts on dogs with his own feature, Mike and Ike. Please welcome Mike in his debut post.

Am I Worthy?
Guest Post by Mike Frezon

Actually, I love Ike. 
Most of you folks here already know that. 
Peg and I have two dogs: our little spaniel mix, Kelly…and Ike. She blogs about them (and sometimes me) all the time. But now that she has asked me to occasionally contribute an entry here, I thought I should tell you a little bit about myself and my dogs. 

My first dog was a beagle/bassett mix that wandered up to the door of our camp in the Adirondack Mountains. We named her Cleo after a talking basset hound featured on an old 1950s TV show (A sitcom called The People's Choice. Doubtful too many of you will remember it!)  

Then, over our years together, Peg and I got our Dalmatian, Schuyler (just before we got married), Hudson our yellow Labrador Retriever (after Schuyler died and the kids were little), Kelly (a spunky young rescue pup), Brooks (a senior Golden Retriever rescue we had for one very special year), and Ike. Ike will be 9 in January. As is the case in most households, each of our dogs holds a special place in our hearts…and represents a different time in our lives.

Kelly has really always been Peggy’s dog. Hudson, Brooks and Ike were “my dogs.” At least that’s how I’ve seen it. (*EDITOR'S NOTE: Brooks was such a great guy, he made me feel like he was "MY" dog too!)  I was generally the human at the other end of their leash. 

Ike is a pretty typical older Golden. He’s loving, loyal…did I mention loving? He gets up with me in the morning and sees me off to work. He then waits—patiently—at home with Peg and Kelly for me to return.He gets all excited when he sees me, runs to get his favorite tennis ball, and then hardly leaves my side until it’s time to go to bed and do it all over again.  

What did I do to deserve that adulation? Not enough…that’s for sure. Oh, I feed him some meals, walk him, play ball with him, etc. And I love him with all my heart. But his love for me is… different. It’s total. He would be at my side 24/7 if it were possible. It sometimes makes me feel inadequate. I might have other things on my mind and not pay him the attention that he craves. Peg and I might go out and leave him and Kelly home alone…when all he wants to do is come with me and be with me.  
Peg and I do very well by our dogs. Very few people can live up to their dog’s expectations. But when Ike pushes his nose into my hand when I’m standing in the front hall…or sticks his head onto my laptop when I’m getting caught up on my e-mail, I sometimes fear that I’m not worthy of the extent of Ike’s idolization.  

But that’s the relationship between man and dog.

I am forever trying to live up to Ike’s view of me. Sure, I have a t-shirt that say “Be the person your dog thinks you are,” but I really think my dogs were sent to me to remind me of my need to live to a better standard. Ike might be my dog—“man’s best friend”—my companion and best buddy. But he’s also a constant canine reminder of the life I should be leading—a life of putting others ahead of myself. 

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