I stepped out of my car at the dog sanctuary and stood in the pouring rain watching my five-year-old daughter run towards the dogs that we could adopt. I wished I could take them all and give them a good home.
As I stood in the muddy ground, monitoring my little girl running by the playful dogs in a fenced off area, I heard a pitiful whining sound. I looked around and in the distance I spotted the saddest sight in my life. A lone miserable dog shaking and shivering behind a small gate.
I hurried towards the black stray in my leather boots, I almost slipped as I sludged through the muddy ground. The moment the mongrel figured out I was approaching him, he ran into a narrow room behind the open doorway.
There was no door. As I drew closer, I noticed that they built the tiny enclosure out of stone. I stopped outside a small gate out front and spent ages trying to coax the black dog out of there.
His little face peeked out at me several times but this dog was frightened, After what felt like hours, the mongrel came out of the room and padded to the gate where he let me pat his wet head. He looked so sad.
I spoke to him in the gentlest voice and I felt he must have understood me, because he didn't run away again. In fact, he seemed content and looked up at me with the softest brown eyes I have ever seen.
Suddenly, my daughter rushed up to me screaming. 'Mummy I don't want this dog. He's boring. He won't play with me.' she yelled stamping her feet.
"I want one of those dogs!" she cried pointing at the dogs that were barking and wagging their tails.
"Sweetheart," I said to her. "This dog needs us, Look how sad he is, Come say hello."
"No!" She replied stamping her feet.
"Those dogs are happy. They are all wagging their tails." I said.
Don't you think this dog needs love too?" I asked.
She stopped pouting and placed her hand on the dog. To my surprise; the dog did a little jiggle.
My daughter smiled and whispered into my ear.
"Can we name him "Jingle Bells?"
He's been with us ever since but just Yesterday, he had a seizure and passed away,. He was nineteen years old.
This is a tribute to that wonderful loyal dog.