Two days ago I mentioned my beloved dog Redondo in Me and My Robbie and promised a post on him for October 04 , his birthday.
Edited on Oct.02 : I am sorry but I just realized that I will have to remove my dog Redondo from this post ( I will make a new one for him on his birthday Oct.04, though) as it has just came to my attention – and somehow I had totally forgot this about him – that he absolutely hated Robbie Williams 😉 Every time I put on one of his songs , my dog would give me the look, sigh heavily (and did he sigh heavily…he was a huge dog), and leave the room . This was a very special dog for sure. 🙂
I always had a dog growing up, and after getting married we continued to have a dog , only one at a time. I always loved my dogs but none of them was “my Redondo”. You see, this was a very special dog.
He came to us very very small, I believe he was only 7 or 8 weeks old.
He was such a baby that I took some days off from work to help him settle in and become acquainted with us.
The kids helped in taking care of him , but somehow he became my dog.
He was supposed to become a big dog – his race was “Rafeiro do Alentejo” and these are big dogs used to protect cattle and farms – but he became even bigger.
As is usual with big breed dogs he was a child and then a teenager for a long long time , and did not “calm” down until he was well into his second year.
I was used to educate dogs through positive reinforcement and lots of love but this one was a challenge. Everything you could imagine that he was not supposed to do he would do it.
He managed to dig out all the sprinklers from the garden (and this is a very big garden) , he ate all the roses with thorns and everything , once bit the shirt off from the poor mailman (a new mailman he did not know), and managed to get expelled from dog school.
He was a great guard dog on the property that he prowled through all night. Days you would find him sleeping on the porch , with one eye opening from time to time to spy on things.
He was the sweetest dog with friends and family and loved to be in the living room watching television where he took a whole lot of space sprawled on the floor. From time to time he would raise himself to put his giant paw on your knee so you would pet him and then plop (with a big thud) on the floor again.
My father needs crutches to walk and looses his balance easily (as he had polio in his twenties and has been losing all his muscle ever since) but this big giant dog who would very easily send anyone down just by leaning into them, and had a lot of energy, never ever approached my father to greet him until he had walked all the way in from the gate and was safely sitting. Then he would come and accept petting and lick his hands. We never taught him this,and my father did not visit often but he just understood it.
He loved bread (and maybe that is what killed him) and you could not pronounce the word near him , even if he was sound asleep he would wake up to that.
He gave us 10 whole years of love and play and challenges and companionship and taught all five of us many many lessons.
I know we will never have another Redondo but that does not stop us from loving other dogs, and a few years ago we took in 2 abandoned dogs from a Rescue Center and adopted a dear Labrador girl from a family member who could no longer keep her.
Me the one who was all for only one dog at any given time , now has 3 of them to keep me on my toes.
Life is full of surprises 🙂