A year without Black Jack

Originally posted June 3, 2010 –

It’s hard to believe, but it’s been a year since Black Jack died. We still miss him every day, even though we have Sammy, the Vanilla Gorilla, to play with and to distract us. We believe Black Jack has been here with us, teaching Sammy how to be a part of the family. Sammy checks on me much the way Black Jack used to, making sure I’m okay and that he knows where I am.

I had probably eight lucid dreams in which Black Jack visited me to let me know he was okay. I haven’t had one for several months now, so I feel like he’s moved on from caretaking me. And, I feel like I’ve moved out of that deep grief. What a special being he was and is. He taught me a lot about unconditional love, and I hope someday to be as good at it as he was.

We love you Wubbie!
~ Dooney


Charlie grows up

Charlie has been a changed dog ever since Black Jack died, and I believe he’s in his own mourning period. In a chat after Jack died, our psychic friend Carol communicated with Jack, who said he was worried about who was going to protect us and that Charlie was “willy-nilly” in his protection duties. I think Charlie must have picked up on that because he sticks close to home now and has started following me around sometimes, as Black Jack used to do. When I’m outside working in the garden or on the labyrinth, he just stands around watching me and watching all around the property. This is very different behavior for him

He still likes to run around and play and he walks up and down the road in front of our property but he doesn’t run away into the woods like he used to every single day for the past 10 years. He also lays next to Jack’s grave every few days. He’s really become more serious, which Don noted today while he was visiting. I feel bad for Charlie because I know without a doubt he is grieving Black Jack’s death, but I think this is a good growth process for him as well as for us. Maybe that’s why Black Jack’s spirit has been hanging around.

When we feel the time is right we’ll get another dog companion for Charlie and for us. I have a feeling there’s a yellow lab puppy in our future.

~ Dooney


Our absent friends – Charlie and Black Jack

Originally posted May 25, 2009 – This is a post from another blog of mine, before I decided to do a separate dog blog. Black Jack became very ill that night and we had him put to sleep on May 27, 2009. Charlie and Black Jack were with us for a long time and we miss them terribly….

Black Jack and Charlie

Black Jack has had some health problems lately for which the vet is unable to offer a solution, so we’re using the zapper and Standard Process whole food supps, and he’s doing great. I also do acupressure on his hips every night. He’s 13 or 14 and still going strong. He came to us via a couple who rescued him one winter when he was wandering and starving. They couldn’t keep him and were looking for a home for him. We had lost our border collie, Cowboy Joe, in a freak accident 6 months earlier and were looking for another dog. We knew a dog would come to us. I told Stevo I wanted our next dog to be named Jack. Two weeks later, we found out about this dog and this couple brought him over for us to look at. He was roaming around the front yard, looking rangy and wild, like a wolf, and I asked the guy if they had named him. “We call him Black Jack,” he said. That was it for me. Love at first sight.  :-)

Charlie is half Doberman and half St. Bernard (really) and he’s simply the most wonderful dog in the world. He’s a healer of sorts…I once saw him comfort a woman who had just been diagnosed with cancer. He went up to her and put his head in her lap and she came alive. Her face went from gray and lifeless to pink and smiling. He just has a way of making everything okay. He was born at a breeders (accidental love tryst between a pure Doberman and a pure St. Bernard). Someone who knew of the litter asked for one of the puppies, so Charlie was flown to California from Ohio at 8 weeks of age. I don’t think he’s ever recovered – he hates loud noises. Anyway, the guy who got him ended up being gone from his apartment for 14 hours a day, fishing off the Northern California coast. So Charlie grew up in a crate.

Finally, the guy gave Charlie to his parents, who lived on an orchard that was owned by friends of ours. They told us about him and we eventually went to see him. Again, love at first sight. We couldn’t believe they were giving this dog away. We took him home that day and he’s been with us ever since. Charlie is 11 years old and is still like a youngster. He’s been on a raw food diet for 9 years. I think it’s working!

We were never able to have kids, so these guys are it.


Welcome to Dooney’s Dog Blog!

I decided to start a blog about my dogs (and cats) because I find them to be so entertaining and all of my animals, past and present, are a big part of who I am. Dogs are especially good at helping you to keep your perspective and keep your heart open as you go through life. They remind you of the basics:

Is it time to eat?
Let’s go play!
Cuddle with me!
I love you, mama…
Is it time to eat again?

Many times I find myself talking to my dogs as if they were children. Since I was never able to have children, it gives me the sense of what it must be like to be a parent of a human child. For instance:

“Get off your brother!”
“Don’t make me come over there…”

And I worry over them, clean up after them and have to constantly be on the watch. Consistency of discipline is just as important, especially with a dog who thinks they are the boss of you (the Alpha).

Cats are a whole other world. They can’t be trained or disciplined very well, at least in my experience. I always wanted one of those cats who was really mellow and draped themselves on my arm, patted my face to wake me up and generally lolled about being soft and fuzzy and pleasant. Instead, I’ve always gotten the bossy, cranky, totally independent and snooty type of cat. It must be my challenge in life!

I hope you find my stories and observations funny and true to your own life. My life just wouldn’t be the same without my pets and they make me happy….most of the time.  :-)

~ Dooney