Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Who else would I walk with but Rudy? The walk with him was a bit different this time though. Another volunteer and I were asked to walk Rudy with another dog named Zoey. I guess that Zoey is a bit woeful of the world and Rudy has been pretty darn good support. Fill up my pockets with treats, and head to the room where they are both staying.
As we start to head out, you can tell that Zoey isn’t exactly crazy about the idea. Rudy on the other hand, he’s ready to go! As we start to motivate towards the park, things smooth out a little bit. It really was an uneventful walk. We met a few other dogs, hung out for a few, but would continue walking around the park. We would walk some more and occasionally stop for a treat, a potty break, or for some scratches and a hug, but overall, it was just a walk. Time seemed to roll past rather quickly. Before I knew it, it was time to head back and bid farewell to my friend.
It hit me this morning what Rudolph was teaching me last night, and I’m not quite sure how he was able to teach me two lessons about the same subject, and show me both the good and bad sides of it.
Rudy was there for Zoey. He had gone from a dog that needed care, to one that could do the caring. He has constantly improved and has gone from the one that needed help, to the one doing the helping. To meet him 2 months ago and see where he is now and what he does now, he’s come a tremendous distance. It was all done by making constant, small improvements. It’s amazing what effort and time can create.
The constant improvement that Rudy has done, well...I guess I had stopped improving with him on our walks. We have a bit of a routine which is nice, but in the same sense, this isn’t where it should be stopping. He wants to improve. He wants to learn. He’s nowhere close to reaching his potential. In life, so many of us reach a comfortable spot and stop pushing forward. Rudy is depending on me to help him do this until he finds his forever home...and I feel like I’ve let him down. I’m honestly finding that very difficult to deal with. That “comfortable routine” that has been found in the walks is holding him back. Maybe we all need to get out of our comfortable routine and learn something new.
This is a very special dog, and he deserves better. Once again, I’m really hoping that my friend has found a forever home before my return visit next Monday. If not, I know that I need to help him help me improve.