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Whittling Away: Telly fills a void, but Buddy is still the Wonder Dog

April 13, 2018 11:36 am Updated: April 13, 2018 11:42 am

Telly is his name and being canine is his game.

He came into our lives a couple of months ago, and we’re better for it. Anyone who has lost a long-term pet knows how sad we were when Buddy The Wonder Dog left us to go join the other beloved pets waiting to be rejoined with us in the future.

We had Buddy for six-and-a-half wonderful years and he lived a long and full life before passing away at 18 years old. He was a handful and required a whole bunch of special treatment. He could not be left alone.

The vet suggested training him to stay in a wire crate when we left. I spent two weeks getting him used to the crate, adding a bed, toys and treats gradually, then closing the door part way before finally all the way and leaving the room for longer and longer periods and finally leaving him fastened safely in.

I went to the post office and back — a 10-minute trip. He met me at the door, the side busted loose on the cage.

A couple of days of retraining and zip ties all around the cage, I made another trip to the post office and he met me at the door. I tried it four or five more times, and the crate was completely destroyed. I surrendered and Buddy went everywhere I did.

Buddy never met a person he didn’t like — everybody was his friend. He was the perfect dog, didn’t jump on people, didn’t bark.

I used him as a therapy dog with senior citizens. We visited Greene Meadows monthly and he was loved by everybody. If it had fur or feathers, however, it was a different matter: he wanted them dead.

He had no canine friends, didn’t like cats and dreamed of catching a deer. There was a bond between us I’ve never had with another animal or human. I still believe he was the reincarnation of a Buddhist monk!

Telly, on the other hand, is 100 percent dog. He is kind and sweet and loves all of God’s creatures. I searched most of the local humane shelters and cruised the web sites of rescue groups. I saw so many hopeful faces it was heartbreaking, then Telly’s profile appeared on Peppertree’s site along with his smiley picture.

We sent in an application to meet him. We were told he would be at an adoption clinic in Latham. We went, met him and his foster mom who had driven him up from her home in New Jersey. It was love at first sight, but there were two other couples interested in meeting Telly and we were told to await a phone call in the afternoon.

The call came and we were the lucky ones. Telly was delivered to our home so the home and grounds could be inspected. They were found to be acceptable and the two-week trial period started. By the time the trial ended, we were in love with this slightly goofy guy.

He’s gentle, doesn’t jump on people, doesn’t bark at anyone but us and then only when nature calls. He should hate everything that walks on two legs, but he’s one big wiggle of love whenever he meets someone new.

That’s one of the big differences between dogs and humans. He was starved, beaten and then shot and he still loves. He was leery of my cane, but has learned that it isn’t used to hurt. Sudden loud noises cause him to freeze and he eats every meal like it may be his last.

He’s cute, affectionate, playful and loves going for walks. He has a limp, but then, so do I.

Everyone needs a pet, I still miss Buddy, but the hole in my heart is full of Telly and it feels good.

Thought for the week: If God had wanted me to touch my toes, he’d have put them on my knees.

Until next week, may you and yours be happy and well.

Reach Dick Brooks at