I watched my parents transform from an outgoing couple who loved to entertain family and friends to a pair who were housebound and isolated. As their health declined their world got smaller and I didn’t want that to happen to Sophie after she became paralyzed. You see our little girl was a vibrant dog who barked happily when she spotted a dog in a passing car and greeted everyone she met on our walks. I didn’t want her to be lonely.
Thankfully Sophie had two amazing buddies that kept her company throughout her illness. Shadow and Cody were her committed companions.
In an earlier post I explained that Shadow joined our family after Ken and I saw her at a fundraiser for a local shelter. At first Sophie hated the idea of having a new dog in our home. She refused to let Shadow into the house by blocking the doorway with her body. But once Sophie saw her older canine housemates playing with Shadow, she warmed up to the idea. Before too long the two dogs were best friends and whenever you called one of their names, both little heads would pop up together. It was a bond that lasted a lifetime.
Cody came into our lives six years later after he was rescued from an animal hoarder. He liked Sophie and Shadow right away, but the two BFF’s snubbed and ignored him. They made him prove that he was worthy of their friendship.
Finally all three dogs found their individual position in our family and their friendship with each other blossomed.
Even with this strong connection, I still worried that as Sophie became less mobile her two buddies would move on with life, just as I had witnessed with my parents. Gratefully, that isn’t at all the way the dogs reacted.
In a previous story I shared how Cody continued to play a modified version of tag with Sophie when she lost the ability to walk and Shadow always made sure Sophie got her turn (as usual) when the three dogs played catch. Shadow and Cody happily rallied around Sophie as she got weaker.
They lay down with her in our bedroom when Ken and I had left the house for an evening with friends and they waited to eat until I sat Sophie up and got her bowl in place. The dogs even waited until all three of their favorite homemade frozen desserts were handed out each night, before devouring them.
Near the end they were puzzled about why Sophie couldn’t join them for a walk and they kissed her face if she cried. Sophie was very lucky to have such good friends and I truly think Shadow and Cody kept her going many months after we thought she would be around.