Archive for the ‘dogs’ Tag

When a dog steals your heart

Our yellow labrador, Titus Maximus, my husband and I on a walk, taken over seven years ago.

When a dog steals your heart

it becomes that kind of love

where a bond of mutual trust

is formed from the start.

It grows stronger through the years

and when it is his time

and your heart is filled with grief

you watch through your tears

as he’s quietly put to sleep.

You’re thankful for what you had

and the memories that you keep,

but now you say goodbye

after his last and final breath,

and when it’s time to part

you clutch his collar, leash and tags

like they’re pieces to his heart.


Joyce E. Johnson (2015)

Paw notes: Our beloved yellow lab, Titus Maximus was ten years old when we had to have him put to sleep. He had a cancerous brain tumor that caused epileptic seizures with other deteriorating side effects. We got him when he was just an eight week old pup, and he was the most mellow yellow lab we’d ever seen, easy to train, and so loving and affectionate with everyone. Titus was the second lab we owned as we had a black lab once too before getting Titus. Blackjack became paralysed due to deteriorating hip dysplasia and arthritic joints. Although they both were not our only dogs owned through the years they all were very special and we have good memories of all. It never becomes any easier as time goes on when you have to make a difficult decision after they’ve lived a long time, then have to say goodbye and have them euthanized.      



Buddy trying to catch the bubbles my grandson was blowing at him. Buddy is my daughter’s dog.


What is brown, funny and fast?

Has a wet nose

Won’t sit still

For a picture, or pose?


What has big feet,

speeding tail,

stuffs a shoe with his toy,

and lies on his back

all innocent

and coy?


What is energized

Never tired,

Always moving

Always wired?


What pushes his paw

Up on a warm lap,

Drool dripping from his jowls

Like a tree

Oozing sap?


What won’t hunt

Cause he’d rather play

Is good entertainment

And brightens my day?

Buddy!  🙂


 Joyce E. Johnson © 2014

Maggie Mae

Maggie Mae

Maggie Mae is a mix; a bit of Australian cattle dog,

With a bit of Shar Pei and Chow, we think.

Her coat is the color of cinnamon and honey,

and her tongue is spotted, all black and pink.

We laugh at her antics; they’re just plain funny.

We watch to see what next she does

with her pointed ears raised to the sun.

Everyone loves her; it’s not just because

she’s such a smart dog, trained and fun,

but her rambunctious perspective of life that’s sweet.

A born hunter; she loves chasing squirrels,

watches for prey and is fast on her feet.

But with a scolding to let them be

she understands the rules and command

so with reluctance will set them free.


Joyce E. Johnson (2014)

Paw notes:  The picture above was taken just a few days after Maggie was bitten by a rattle snake and was fortunate to even be alive. Last fall she and my husband were up on our mountain property and Maggie came across a rattle snake, something she had never seen before. Because of her curiosity she could not leave it alone so smacked at it with her paw and it bit her on the muzzle above her mouth. When my husband heard her yelp and saw her jump twice when struck he knew what had happened. We have a lot of rock and boulders on our lot there where snakes and small game hide and nest and large game (deer, elk, black bears, cougars and coyotes are sometimes seen, the deer almost all the time which we love). My husband immediately stopped cutting and clearing wood piles to get her into the back of our car and hurried down to the CSU veterinary hospital where she was treated and anti-venom injections were administered. She was kept over night for observation but, released the next day and doing much better so was able to come home. It was a scary experience for her and for my husband as he rushed her down to Fort Collins over twenty miles away. The shaved part on Maggie’s leg can be seen here where they inserted an IV tube and one of the two puncture wounds can be seen near her nose. She is a survivor as well as a ‘hunter’, but we hope she will be more wary and careful of snakes and game in the future. It will no doubt make our whole family more careful as we hike, walk around and camp out as it is a favorite retreat for ourselves and our kids and grand kids.

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