Bear's First Year

Today marks a special anniversary so please pardon my tangent into a very personal story. February 24 marks one year that a dog named Bear came into my life. He's a very special and magical dog and we were meant to be together. This is the story of Bear's first year.

When Bella died I fell apart. Even though she had been sick for some time and it was not a surprise, it tore me up inside in ways I can't even describe. I had not planned on getting another dog but the loss was so painful I didn't know if I could go on. There was a part of me that had no purpose and I felt lost. I decided I didn't want to be without a dog and with my broken heart I searched for a rescue dog. I knew I wanted another Husky and I knew I wanted an older dog. I was much too sad to deal with the issues of a youngster.

One rescue turned me down because I live in an apartment. And they turned me down in the worst way, by not responding to my messages. I wanted to give up. I began to think that maybe it wasn't meant to be and as that thought ran through my mind my heart broke even more. Then I reached out to Alley's Rescued Angels and she didn't turn me down. I asked her about one dog that I had seen on their Facebook page and she asked if I specifically wanted a female dog. When I replied that I'd be open to considering a male as well she sent me the photo below.

I kept looking at him on my phone and I couldn't stop thinking about him. I began to think that he could be the one. It took me two and a half hours to drive up to ARA. I hadn't adopted a dog in a long time and I was nervous. I kept expecting some sort of epiphany when I saw him, but that didn't happen. He was quiet, calm and so gentle. He was surprisingly good on a leash, too. Okay, I thought, this is it. He slept while I filled out the paperwork and then we proceeded to drive another two and a half hours home. That's him on rescue day in the photo below.

When I got him home something unexpected happened. I was overcome with grief. Having another dog in my apartment somehow made The Fuzz's death ten times more painful than it had been before. Suddenly it was real - she was gone never to return - and it hurt so much worse. I didn't think I could handle it. It wasn't fair to Bear and it was so painful for me. I never would have guessed that bringing home another dog would tear me apart like that. But I decided to wait and to at least give him a chance. He was so sweet and the thought of sending him back made me so sad.

The first thing I did the next day was take him to the groomer's. Look how lovely he looked.

I suspected something might not be right with his back legs and so I also took him to the vet. That's when I learned that he had a heart murmur and bone spurs in the lower part of his back. That was it. I couldn't send him back - he needed me. I just hadn't realized how much I needed him, too.

Since then Mr. Bear has been my constant companion. When I'm sad he comforts me. I talk to him and every day he makes me laugh with his silly antics. By my side all day while I work, he is the best company I could ever ask for. He proves the saying that you don't get the dog you want, you get the dog you need. In return for all he gives, he gets all the love he can handle, kisses and cuddles, good food, lots of treats and trips to the park by the beach. This is Bear on Thanksgiving when we went to the beach to watch the sunset.

Random Bear silliness

I am immensely grateful that we rescued each other and I look forward to many more years together. I hope you've enjoyed the story of Bear's first year. Happy anniversary Mr. Bear!

PS. Please consider donating to ARA - they do amazing work and without them so many Huskies would be put to sleep. Mr. Bear wouldn't be here if it weren't for them.