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Sunday, September 19, 2021

Black Dog Sunday

Whenever I see Shyla play in the water, I am reminded of Black Dog Joy. Way back in 2012, Shyla joined our pack as the most fearful and timid nine month old dog I'd ever met. She was afraid of almost everything. But, her big brother started enveloping her in his crazy joyful attitude from the start. Within her first month with us, we went to a favorite place called "Dog Leap Lake". 

As soon as we arrived, our Black Dog wanted to retrieve sticks from the water. At first, Shyla stood on the shore watching and then assisting with the final bit of the retrieve. Our Black Dog didn't mind her biting the stick at all. In fact, he turned it so that she could grab it more easily (photo from 2012).

During that very first day playing in water, Shyla got the courage to retrieve sticks on her own. No doubt, her big brother's joy helped her to be so brave.

Over the years, Shyla and our Black Dog played in many lakes together, one more than any other. It's an unnamed lake off the beaten path in the San Juan Mountains. When we visited it this year, we decided to name it Black Dog Lake.

Fast forward to this year, nine years later. This year, we all missed our Black Dog terribly. However, in his tradition, Shyla was ready to be joyful all on her own. We humans weren't sure that she'd be able to find this happiness without our Black Dog's excitement. But she was, and it filled our hearts with joy.

Happy Black Dog Sunday!


  1. " When I am gone, carry on each day as though I am still there, remembering what we once did together, " Words I spoke when, after my Dad has died, I donated his set of bowls still in the leather bag, to the Clevedon Bowling Club. So in this true fashion, Shyla is carrying on the wonderful legacy that R has left, you will always miss him dearly, and more so when you revisit a favourite place where he so enjoyed every day.R, your love lingers and always will.

  2. May the Black Dog live lightly in your heart forever.

  3. I tried to find the year you first got your wonderful Black Dog.
    and how he came to be yours. I got caught up in reading about your Angel K.
    you have been through so much. I think it's Your own spirit that they reflect! XO

    1. Our Black Dog came to us around Christmas of 2007, prior to the start of the blog. His trials started almost right away with an elbow surgery on his first birthday in October. Despite that, his trademark joy was present from the start!

      I visit Angel K's grave (where her ashes are buried) every day during my bike ride. There are columbines growing on it. She is next to our Black Dog under the Lone Ponderosa at Lab Valley. I miss her. I always will.

      Thanks for the kind comment.

  4. Shyla's mind's eye has a permanent picture of her gorgeous and Kind brother....she is channeling his joy!
    Hugs Cecilia

  5. Sweet R was a most wonderful and loving brother!

  6. What wonderful memories, both the old and the new.

  7. I know Black Dog still teaches his siblings as an angel

  8. We love that you named the lake Black Dog Lake. Shyla sure looks happy taking a leap into the cool water.

  9. What a trooper! Clearly she still loves the water thanks to your sweet Black Dog boy.


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