We went to the beautiful farm that had passed into days after its former glory and met a sweet older couple. There was a sad story that came with the little beagle. Her owner, a man well into his late 70's or early 80's had bought her as a pup 6 years ago to hunt with. They had some good times hunting but about 3 years in he was struck with cancer and was no longer able to hunt rabbits with his dog. He sheepishly shared that the beagle had not been out of her outside dog kennel in a VERY LONG time and though they fed her daily, she had not had any exercise
and little human love for quite some time. Now I was a bit worried.
The old man let the dog out of her outdoor kennel and she was very scared, in my experience one has to be very careful with a scared animal because they will often react aggressively due to being scared. This dog surprised me though, other than being very shy she did not act in any way aggressive and she was so sweet and passive. We did end up deciding to bring her home, she is a smaller than our old beagle but reminds me of her with nearly identical markings.
I was saddened for the older couple as they recounted for us their glory days of farming but that due to ailing health they were having to relocate. The old man got teary as we were leaving, I am not so sure it was as much for this particular dog as it was for the closing of a chapter in his life, a chapter in which he no longer can participate in the activities he once loved. We waved as we headed down the lane towards home and I did update the couple with pictures after we got our new pet home and settled. I can't help but feel sad thinking that one day that may be us, unable to do the tasks required when one owns land.
We got home and have had to be patient with our new family member. I imagine that she was used to different handling as she sometimes still cowers when I pet her but she is adjusting quite well and the kids all love her. She really loves her daily runs in the back field, especially when accompanied by my husband's hunting dogs. It has been a really neat transformation to watch her go from tail tucked between her legs and not willing to eat from my hand to seeing her anxiously awaiting my steps in the morning and tail wagging high during afternoon runs.
Welcome, Tuesday, to our family.