The True Value of Second Chances

Now that I’m home, bathed, settled and fed,
All nicely tucked in my warm new bed.

You’re New but I’m Tired. Can I Trust You?

I’d like to open my baggage
Lest I forget,
There is so much to carry –
So much to regret.

I Didn’t Mean to Hurt You; But, I Was Excited.

Hmm . . . Yes, there it is, right on the top
Let’s unpack Loneliness, Heartache and Loss,
And there by my leash hides Fear and Shame.

I’m So Afraid You Won’t Want Me Anymore.

As I look on these things I tried so hard to leave –
I still have to unpack my baggage called Pain.

I Didn’t Mean to Bite You; But, I Was Afraid.

I loved them, the others, the ones who left me,
But I wasn’t good enough – for they didn’t want me.

Waiting for Adoption in the Loneliest Place In the World

Will you add to my baggage?
Will you help me unpack?
Or will you just look at my things –
And take me right back?

Table Chewing Millie
I Was Afraid You Would Never Come Back.

Do you have the time to help me unpack?
To put away my baggage,
To never repack?

Suitcase Stowaway
Please Help Me Unpack. I Want to Stay With You.

I pray that you do – I’m so tired you see,
But if I come with baggage –
Will you still want me?

Jailbird Auggie
Please Open My Door and Let Me Love You

Written by Evelynn Colbath

That’s the True Value of Second Chances

You and I

Rocky teaches me the True Value of Companionship through his unconditional love and unselfish devotion.

I dreamed last night about you and I.

I dreamed we were running together

Something neither you nor I have

Been able to do well for some time.

Me with my knees and you with your heart.

What a broken-down pair of old men we are,

You and I.

But run we did in my dream last night.

We ran together toward the sun rising in the East

And it occurred to me, in my dream,

That we should be running West,

To where days end for such as you and I.

Not toward the East, where days begin

For boys and pups,

Younger than you and I.

When I woke, I pondered my dream

And decided the message

Is that we’re not done yet.

We still have miles to go, you and I.

Old though we may be,

We are more than just an old man, an old dog.

We are whatever we decide to be

We have chapters left to write

In the book of our lives.

Places to go, things to do, people to see.

We will never be young again,

We will never be boy and pup again;

But, we can be anything and everything else.

Anything we two can dream. You and I.

That’s the True Value of Companionship.

True Value of Companionship
Rocky 042916

Wish I Knew You When

The True Value of Second Chances

I saw a Great Dane puppy today that made me think of you. Tall and gangly, boisterously romping and tromping through grass and shrubs and flower beds. Excited by everything, as if this puppy had suddenly sprung into existence; and, was experiencing life for the very first time!

Saved from

Nothing about the Great Dane pup I saw was anything like you at all. It was all legs and tail and ears moving in several directions at the same time.

You are short, compact, and muscular. Its muzzle was long while you’re a card-carrying member of the Flat-Faced Dog Society. The Great Dane was still a puppy, whereas you’re a senior. Although still a puppy, it was already a big dog and getting bigger – did I mention how short you are?

What I want to believe is that what I saw today in that very large puppy is what you were like once, when you were young. When life, for you, was new. I love everything about you – except the illness that will take you away forever. Someday.

I love the adult you that I met six years ago. But, I wish I knew you when you were an innocent puppy – when life was new. Before you were given away by the person you loved and trusted. Before you were forcibly removed from the only home – the only life – you’d ever known.

Familiar sights, smells, tastes, and textures were gone forever – replaced by an unknown, scary place where even your food and bed were different. And mommy’s cats were gone. Mommy had lots of cats and you peed in the house so she wouldn’t forget about you. So she would remember to love you, too.

My Rocky Boy_070217

Then, we met. You were in a crate inside Choice Pet Market at Scottsdale Road and Shea Blvd, in Scottsdale, Arizona. Driving by, Ellen saw the Arizona Boston Terrier Rescue Adoption Event sign.

On impulse, we stopped and went in. I wasn’t even looking for another dog. We already had a Boston, a Boxer, and a Pug at home. When I saw you for the first time, I turned to Ellen and said: “That’s him! That’s my dog!” You sealed the deal by jumping onto my lap and licking my face.

I have to confess that I. Did. Not. Like your name. Rocky. Who names their dog Rocky?! Turns out a lot of people do. The American Kennel Club (AKC) reports that, in 2016, Rocky was the 6th most popular name for male dogs. I learned to tolerate it, and later actually like it – after The Beatles played Rocky Raccoon in my head for a few months.

Rocky, Rock, Rock Monster, Rock Star, Rocky Boy, Rocky the Rock Elliott. My good boy. My best boy. We’ve grown older together, you and I – you, a little faster than I. Six years ago, you were 3 ½ years old and still had a little puppy left in you. We ran, played, tugged and went exploring when we got sidetracked on our walks. We played in the snow in Denver, ran on the beach in Los Angeles, and panted in the heat in Phoenix.

Your enthusiasm and unbridled joy has never diminished. You love absolutely everything! You always start every walk tugging on your leash, like we’re embarking on the Greatest Adventure Ever!

When you started reaching the end of even short walks with a loose leash, breathless, and needing to be carried up the stairs, our vet at San Dimas Animal Hospital confirmed that you’re in Congestive Heart Failure.

How I hate that three-word death sentence. My grandmother – the one person I loved more than anyone else – died from congestive heart failure.

I know that you could live for years – just not the life we lived before. You don’t even know you’re sick.

Today, our walks are shorter and our rest times longer. Today, we sit together on the floor or stairs or sofa while I pet you and you lick me with more saliva than a Saint Bernard. Or, I talk to you while you look at me like you understand every word – and then lick me with more saliva than a Saint Bernard.

We don’t get to hike and the camera captures fewer action shots of you; but we always have each other. I think I’ll get one of those K9 Sport Sacks or some other backpack dog carrier and lug your 30# around on my back. He ain’t heavy, He’s my puppy!

So, when I saw a Great Dane puppy today acting as if every moment was the Greatest Adventure Ever! it made me think of you. I am jealous of everyone who knew you as the rambunctious, pocket-sized tornado that Boston Terrier puppies usually are.

Mostly, I found myself wishing that we had met sooner so we could have lived more and loved longer.

You’re a Good Boy, Rocky. You’re the Best Boy.

That’s the True Value of Second Chances

~ George

Hey, please feel free to share stories about your dog(s). I would love to hear from you!!

BTW, what was the most popular name for boy-type dogs in 2016? Find out here:

Kriss, R. (2016, December 5) These are the most popular dog names of 2016. Retrieved from: