Mending Broken Hearts - A Christmas Edition

As the Christmas season is fast approaching and 2023 is closing to an end (I am not sad about it!), here is a story to mend broken hearts, a Christmas blessing of sorts. They say that animals, especially dogs, can read humans better than we can. They smell our fear, can know if we are sick before we do and can also sense when hearts have been saddened. Unfortunately, they too have these experiences and are in need of our help.
Last July, I lost my soul dog, Bjorn. He was chronically sick and I was devoted to his care and he was devoted to loving me. When all the efforts to keep him alive became fruitless, we both knew what we had to let go. That fatal day, not knowing that it was going to be the day, we went to the park and sat to watch the squirrels run around in the morning and in the afternoon, Bjorn slept outside not far from me as I was painting. By supper, he told me, a bit like my dad months later, that his body was giving up and had to go.
Last Christmas, a handsome Finnish Lapphund had had his own dramatic loss south of the border.  His human mom, Diane, had become suddenly ill and could no longer take care of him and his four Samoyed siblings.   Overnight, mom was gone and he lived with a neighbour and other dogs, cats, horses and goats in need of a home.  Haldi was the pride and joy of his mom and she did all kinds of activities with him - sledding, agility and tricks, they travelled and had many adventures together. Weeks became months and although Haldi would go see Diane in her new assisted home from time to time, it was not the same.
Unfortunately,in October, Diane passed away and Haldi was in need of a new home.
Cue in two miracle dog workers. Manon and Kim who, through some trials and tribulations, were able to match these two hearts together. On a cold Thursday afternoon, Manon and I left the Nation’s Capital and headed south, crossing the border at Thousand Islands at sunset and resting in Binghampton (NY) before my first meeting with Haldi the next morning. 
We ultimately drove to Scranton (PA) - cue in the Office music (if you know you know) - and when Haldi came out of the car, he came directly to me to give me the best furry kisses ever, despite knowing Manon. He was a bit smelly (sorry Haldi) and in dire need of grooming but so kind and gentle. We drove back without incident and the introductions with Milan, my other Lapphund, went without a hitch.
As you can see from the pictures, Haldi seems to love his new country and we have been so blessed to have him with us, especially during this time following the death of my father. There is nothing like puppy eyes and furry love to melt your heart and allow it to heal.
Milan, Haldi and I would like to wish you a wonderful Christmas season! Hug those you love and tell them that you love them - often. Wishing you a healthy and happy 2024, filled with new opportunities, creativity and yes, some furry love.

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