It has been some months now since Maddi crossed The Rainbow Bridge. To begin with, Zack could not make out where his one-time companion had disappeared to. Every so often, he would walk to the door leading downstairs and peer downwards, hoping to catch sight of Maddi or at least to perceive an awareness of her presence. Nada! Eventually, he would walk downstairs and patrol the rooms, looking for signs of his old peer. (Maddi’s legs were giving way as she aged, so she often stayed downstairs, rather than venturing upstairs.)
Hubby and I felt very sorry for Zack but I really did not want to give house room to another ‘new’ dog just yet as Maddi’s death was still very fresh in our hearts. Rescue had already contacted us to say that a Pyrenean girl was available if we would offer her a home. However, I wanted time to just be. One day, our younger son was visiting from university and he said that Zack looked very sad. However, it is now four months since Maddi’s demise, and Zack is much more settled and happy in himself, although he cannot seem to get rid of this new habit of gaziing down the stairs . . . in search of . . . what?
One thing we have noticed is that Zack has started to squeak more in order to bring himself to our attention. By ‘squeak’, I do mean squeak! It is a sort of part whine and part cry, and sounds like a particularly loud squeaky toy. When one hears the squeak, one thinks that it is a small dog. He does not sound large at all when he squeaks – just pitiful. However, of course it is a large dog that emerges out of that tiny carrying noise.
Poor Zack has also recently lost a very good companion in our older son, which has made him crave human attention even more than usual. First, our younger boy, who leapt about playing with him like a sometime dervish went to university and Zack had to get used to seeing much less of him. Then, our older boy, with whom Zack ‘cooks’ together – i.e. our son cooks and Zack waits patiently as he watches all the proceedings for his share of cooked food too (including steak!) – went away last week to begin a year’s stint as an engineering intern. No wonder Zack is missing him!
So, it is now really only Mummy and Daddy who are around and rattling about this empty nest with Zack to keep us company. And Zack is indeed missing the rest of the family, as we are. Still, we all adapt and it is our hope that Zack will quickly do so too. I only wish we could explain to Zack what had been and is going on so that he can understand the situation. Perhaps then he will not squeak in that pitiable way quite so much.
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