Hon and Dear will be turning 10 soon. Very soon. One of them was born on the first day of Spring, March 20 and the other around or about April 10. One of them enjoyed all the privileges of life as he began his life here on earth. The other was born into, let’s say, less than perfect circumstances, but he survived. One takes life as it comes, no worries (except for worrying about the other), a wait and see attitude. The other is, let’s just say, a little issue laden, a little stressed, a little needy.
Hon and Dear are role models for siblings. They agree to disagree. One ‘owns’ all the toys and doesn’t really tolerate that line being crossed. The other respects that line but uses it to antagonize. One has boundless energy and wants to rough and tumble outside, regardless the weather. The other goes out and joins in for a bit, knowing that joining in ‘in spirit’ is how he is needed. They eat meals peacefully in their own little space and share at snack time. Each accepts the other for who they are, with minimal arguments and always happy to be with each other at the end of the day.
Their names are Harry and Ace. They were born 3 weeks apart and worlds away from each other. Harry is my “special order” Australian Labradoodle. He is exactly what I told the breeder I was hoping for in a dog. Hypo-allergenic and no shed, happy to be around you without being too ‘needy’. He joined me, his ‘forever’ family, when he was 10 weeks old. He had flown all the way from Illinois, a trip that didn’t phase him in the least. Easy to train yet with a funny personality and will of his own. He is a care giver by nature and Ace is his number one patient. Most of his day is spent making sure Ace is not getting into trouble somewhere, it is a full time job.
Ace I like to refer to as my junkyard dog although technically he was born in a construction yard. His mother, a medium sized brown dog with no tail (important detail), had two litters of pups every year. She was smart enough to have them under the container trailers, in a yard surrounded by razor wire topped fencing and protected by yard dogs. This was Newark, NJ after all and a girl needed to be careful where she had her babies. My son chose Ace from the litter of 12 because he looked like his father, the gorgeous Rottweiler from down the road (rather than some of his litter mates who took after their fathers, the yard dog shepherds) and he was born with no tail, just like his mother. We brought Ace home with us when he was 5 weeks old because as the pups began to venture away from their nest life got a little dangerous. This was an active construction yard after all! Ace is a predator! He has many squirrels notched on his belt, a bird or two and most recently a ground hog. He is intense, neurotic, a PAIN to take to the vet, and the most loving dog I have ever owned. He loves most people but you never know with him, some people he just has issues with (our older son is one of them) and then he just can’t let down his guard. He is a rule follower, except when he gets hyper focused on some wild animal. He loves to play fetch, is an ‘uber’ athlete and adores his Harry.
The relationship between these two very different dogs can only be described as loving. They are attached at the hip. They even still crate together! They support each other, play with each other, comfort each other and are just sort of ‘there’ for each other. Which is why when I look at them one phrase pops in my head,
Hon and Dear.