Every once in a while someone comes into our lives who is truly special and who changes it forever. 

When I purchased a home in March 2000, I immediately went on the hunt for a puppy. Having been raised with dogs myself, I always believed that once I had a home that would allow a dog, I would get one. 

I named her Dogger. Dogger, a rough coat Jack Russell Terrier, was born in Metchosin on March 27, 2000. I brought her to share my home, my life, and what would become my family (she predates all of these things) in May 2000. 

She was the runt of her litter and had short little stubby legs. She loved to dribble a basketball with her nose (yeah she did). She was impossible to trick because her eye was always on the ball. 

She swam daily in the summer. She loved her food. 

She was rather independent, but if ever I was sad or had a rough day, she would stick to me like glue, just being there for me. She didn’t miss a thing. 

When our daughter was born, Dogger mothered the new baby. 

We also learned, when we got a new puppy, that Dogger could certainly hold a grudge. 

Those of you who know me, even a little, know of Dogger and the special role she played in the life of our family, our office, and for me. Most of our clients have met her. Where I went, Dogger went.  

These are just some of the most important things she taught me:

  • When someone you love really hurts your feelings (like when we got a new puppy), sometimes, after a time, it is important to totally, completely and unreservedly let that anger and hurt go; true forgiveness is the only way;
  • Unconditional love transcends all in long-term relationships;      
  • Dogs are here for the purpose of love, of loving someone else and of being loved.

Her and I have shared a deep and profound connection. She was unique, wise, and an old soul. 

She ended her journey in this life on November 11, 2014, with dignity, in my arms.  

This article was written by Val Hemminger.

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