Rooster is my six-year-old Golden Retriever. At the time, we had just “gotten into” raising chickens and I had no intention of ever owning a real rooster. So this puppy represented my new chicken hobby hence his name. Much later, I had one of the chicks I bought turn out to be a boy. Although disappointed we wouldn’t be getting eggs from this chick, we kept him to be our “real” rooster.
Rooster is now an AKC Champion well on his way to becoming a Grand Champion. He has sired a few litters himself; he is the father of our girl, Doodle, who only needs a few more points for her CH title. He is a very happy boy who enjoys spinning and twirling outside and loves a good run especially to the barn in hopes of chasing a few wayward rabbits who like to live under our chicken coop. A few years ago, Rooster starred as the ambassador for the breed “Golden Retriever”s in a TV production. He LOVED the cameras (and guys behind the cameras) filming him which is so characteristics of his breed.
It is because of his zest for life, I trained Rooster formal obedience routines in hopes of competing in that venue to garner his initial obedience title. Rooster LOVED going to training class to practice heeling figure 8’s, sitting at my side when I stopped, and holding his “stay” both sitting and lying down even with distractions. Bad me for not following through by entering him in a trial and actually competing with him! Life has a way of changing even the best laid plans.
Currently, I’m recovering from multiple level spine fusion surgery. It is a slow process regaining my strength and dealing with nerve pain caused by the compressed discs. I am very grateful for the help I have in caring for not only my dogs but also the other critters we have but I look forward to the time when I can continue their care on my own. And it is through this recovery that Rooster never leaves my side!
I really didn’t notice this at first. I was too busy concentrating on learning to walk correctly again. This sounds silly and something I think people may just take for granted but the mechanics of walking had changed for me so to learn to walk correctly again IS a big deal! And then hubby told me that at my side, Rooster was heeling! When I stopped, he stopped and sat at my side. No matter what room I go into, Rooster is there with me. Even getting up to go use the bathroom, he follows lying down outside the door waiting for me. He has become my constant shadow.
Rooster must sense my current problems? When I struggle to get up from being on the floor, he positions himself so that I may push-off on his broad shoulders to stand up. He locks himself in place in order to give me the support I need to get up. This is not something I’ve trained him to do; he just does this.
Dogs are wonderful companions in of themselves. But to have a dog sense I need a bit of extra help, I find this amazing Rooster has taken it upon himself to be my support, physically and emotionally. And he chooses to walk by my side as I practice my gait. As I am sitting here writing this, he is sleeping soundly three feet away from me but should I get up to go into the kitchen, I’ve no doubt he will wake to follow me.
I feel very fortunate to have Rooster not only as a beautiful, accomplished show dog but also my constant companion. He truly is a remarkable dog befitting the expression (wo)man’s best friend! I am incredibly grateful, thankful, blessed to have him by my side!