Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Dog Is My Copilot I
To illustrate the seriously needy state of my poor memory, consider that I have entrusted more than some of my mental energies to Sophie, my four-year-old Belgian Malinois. While I love Sophie, I am not a doting dog owner who must write in fawning terms about his beloved pet, for that’s not the kind of relationship we have. It is much deeper than that, and it’s worth mentioning because I spend more time with Sophie than with almost any other being.
Sophie is a working dog who, when not taking a nap, thrives on having something to do. For her, that something on her to-do list is me. I love Sophie and I love that she loves being my helper. It’s the best of both worlds for us; Sophie is a registered service dog who can go anywhere with me and, in exchange, Sophie also gets to be with me.
A highly intelligent dog, Sophie is has both intuitive and visceral qualities, which she only acts upon shrewdly. She and I communicate well, as only a dog and person can. Think of Steinbeck’s Travels With Charlie for examples.
On one hand, Sophie she is a foil to my cerebral side, listening tirelessly to me as I massage my memory by speaking of memories I would likely be unable to make otherwise. And, of course, I rely heavily upon her intuitive side as well. She can always tell if anything within me is out of sync, usually by raising or lowering her ears. Just as I am sure to heed the sound of Sophie’s bark, I am equally mindful of the motion of her ears, for they almost always foretell of something within me I might not have recognized yet.
It’s not a coincidence that Sophie – a dog – plays this important role in my life, for her intuition is sufficient enough to serve us both, which is the only way it can be for us to work together so well.
Sophie may have a lot going on inside her head, but make no mistake - she’s no pushover. She looks fierce and she has a mean bark that says “Don’t push your luck; you’ve had your warning, now what’s it going to be?” She is a visual deterrent to anyone - human or otherwise – who may have even the slightest iota of wrongdoing in mind, and she is dead serious about her role as protector of both Kami and me.