old dogs

this is my dog, ruby.  he is very old.  he used to come with me to the shop a lot, but then it got so the shop made him pretty nervous-- people coming in and out all day, me getting up and sitting down constantly-- it was just too much for an old guy.

i find that ruby teaches me a lot about the realities of our limitations as we get older.  he has ups and downs-- periods when he is spry and raring to go for long walks in the woods, and periods when his arthritis is worse and he doesn't feel like doing much.  he seems to know what he can handle on a given day-- yesterday, for example, he walked slowly through most of our walk (though he seemed to enjoy it), and in the evening he did not want to climb the stairs for our ritual night time visit to my daughters' rooms (both upstairs while mine is downstairs).  he stood at the bottom of the stairs looking up at us, until i just said goodnight to my girls and went back down as well.

he is graceful in his old age-- constantly checking in with me visually, aware of everything that goes on around him, and much more willing to let the cat with three legs snuggle up to him on his bed at night.

i love him.



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