To My Animal Loving Friends

Author Unknown, submitted by George Kalogeras

When you bring a pet into your life, you begin a journey. A journey that will bring you more love and devotion than you have ever known, yet will also
test your strength and courage. If you allow, the journey will teach you many things, about life, about yourself, and most of all, about love.
You will come away changed forever, for one soul cannot touch another without leaving its mark.

Along the way, you will learn much about savoring life’s simple pleasures — jumping in leaves, snoozing in the sun, the joys of puddles, and even
the satisfaction of a good scratch behind the ears. If you spend much time outside, you will be taught how to truly experience every element, for
no rock, leaf, or log will go unexamined, no rustling bush will be overlooked, and even the very air will be inhaled, pondered, and noted as being
full of valuable information.

Your pace may be slower, except when heading home to the food dish, but you will become a better naturalist, having been taught by an expert in the
field. Too many times we hike on automatic pilot, our goal being to complete the trail rather than enjoy the journey. We miss the details: the
colorful mushrooms on the rotting log, the honeycomb in the old maple snag, the hawk feather caught on a twig.

Once we walk as a dog does, we discover a whole new world. We stop; we browse the landscape, we kick over leaves, peek in tree holes, look up, down,
all around. And we learn what any dog knows: that nature has created a marvelously complex world that is full of surprises, that each cycle of
the seasons bring ever changing wonders, each day an essence all its own.

Even from indoors you will find yourself more attuned to the world around you. You will find yourself watching: summer insects collecting on a screen;
how bizarre they are; how many kinds there are or noting the flick and flash of fireflies through the dark. You will stop to observe the swirling
dance of windblown leaves, or sniff the air after a rain. It does not matter that there is no objective in this; the point is in the doing, in
not letting life’s most important details slip by.

You will find yourself doing silly things that your pet-less friends might not understand: spending thirty minutes in the grocery aisle looking for
the cat food brand your feline must have, buying dog birthday treats, or driving around the block an extra time because your pet enjoys the ride.
You will roll in the snow, wrestle with chewie toys, bounce little rubber balls till your eyes cross, and even run around the house trailing your
bathrobe tie with a cat in hot pursuit, all in the name of love.

Your house will become muddier and hairier. You will wear less dark clothing and buy more lint rollers. You may find dog biscuits in your pocket or
purse, and feel the need to explain that an old plastic shopping bag adorns your living room rug because your cat loves the crinkly sound. You
will learn the true measure of love. The steadfast, undying kind that says, “It doesn’t matter where we are or what we do, or how life treats us
as long as we are together.”

Respect this always. It is the most precious gift any living soul can give another. You will not find it often among the human race. And you will learn
humility. The look in my dog’s eyes often made me feel ashamed. Such joy and love at my presence. She saw not some flawed human who could be cross
and stubborn, moody or rude, but only her wonderful companion. Or maybe she saw those things and dismissed them as mere human foibles, not worth
considering, and so chose to love me anyway.

If you pay attention and learn well, when the journey is done, you will be not just a better person, but the person your pet always knew you to be.
The one they were proud to call beloved friend.

I must caution you that this journey is not without pain. Like all paths of true love, the pain is part of loving. For as

surely as the sun sets, one day your dear animal companion will follow a trail you cannot yet go down. And you will have to find the strength
and love to let them go.

A pet’s time on earth is far too short, especially for those that love them. We borrow them, really, just for a while, and during these brief years
they are generous enough to give us all their love, every inch of their spirit and heart,

until one day there is nothing left. The cat that only yesterday was a kitten is all too soon old and frail and sleeping

in the sun. The young pup of boundless energy now wakes up stiff and lame, the muzzle gone to gray.

Deep down we somehow always knew that this journey would end. We knew that if we gave our hearts they would be broken. But give them we must for it
is all they ask in return. When the time comes, and the road curves ahead to a place we cannot see, we give one final gift and let them run on
ahead, young and whole once more. “God speed, good friend,” we say, until our journey comes full circle and our paths cross again.

The Journey

by Crystal Ward Kent

When you bring a pet into your life, you begin a journey – a journey

that will bring you more love and devotion than you have ever known, yet also

test your strength and courage.

If you allow, the journey will teach you many things, about life, about

yourself, and most of all, about love. You will come away changed

forever, for one soul cannot touch another without leaving its mark.

Along the way, you will learn much about savoring life’s simple

pleasures – jumping in leaves, snoozing in the sun, the joys of puddles, and even

the satisfaction of a good scratch behind the ears.

If you spend much time outside, you will be taught how to truly

experience every element, for no rock, leaf, or log will go unexamined, no rustling

bush will be overlooked, and even the very air will be inhaled, pondered, and noted as being full of valuable information.

Your pace may be slower – except when heading home to the food dish –

but you will become a better

naturalist, having been taught by an expert in the field.

Too many times we hike on automatic pilot, our goal being to complete

the trail rather than enjoy the journey. We miss the details – the colorful

mushrooms on the rotting log, the honeycomb in the old maple snag, the

hawk feather caught on a twig. Once we walk as a dog does, we discover a

whole new world. We stop; we browse the landscape, we kick over leaves, peek

in tree holes, look up, down, all around. And we learn what any dog knows:

that nature has created a marvelously complex world that is full of

surprises, that each cycle of the seasons bring ever changing wonders,

each day an essence all its own.

Even from indoors you will find yourself more attuned to the world

around you. You will find yourself watching summer insects collecting on a

screen.(How bizarre they are! How many kinds there are!), or noting the

flick and flash of fireflies through the dark. You will stop to observe

the swirling dance of windblown leaves, or sniff the air after a rain. It

does not matter that there is no objective in this; the point is in the

doing, in not letting life’s most important details slip by.

You will find yourself doing silly things that your pet-less friends

might not understand: spending thirty minutes in the grocery aisle looking

for the cat food brand your feline must have, buying dog birthday treats, or

driving around the block an extra time because your pet enjoys the ride.

You will roll in the snow, wrestle with chewie toys, bounce little rubber

balls till your eyes cross, and even run around the house trailing your

bathrobe tie – with a cat in hot pursuit – all in the name of love.

Your house will become muddier and hairier. You will wear less dark

clothing and buy more lint rollers. You may find dog biscuits in your pocket or

purse, and feel the need to explain that an old plastic shopping bag

adorns your living room rug because your cat loves the crinkly sound.

You will learn the true measure of love – the steadfast, undying kind

that says, “It doesn’t matter where we are or what we do, or how life treats

us as long as we are together.” Respect this always. It is the most

precious gift any living soul can give another.

You will not find it often among the human race.

And you will learn humility. The look in my dog’s eyes often made me

feel ashamed. Such joy and love at my presence. She saw not some flawed

human who could be cross and stubborn, moody or rude, but only her wonderful

companion. Or maybe she saw those things and dismissed them as mere

human foibles, not worth considering, and so chose to love me anyway.

If you pay attention and learn well, when the journey is done, you will

be not just a better person, but the person your pet always knew you to be

– the one they were proud to call beloved friend.

I must caution you that this journey is not without pain. Like all paths

of true love, the pain is part of loving. For as surely as the sun sets,

one day your dear animal companion will follow a trail you cannot yet go

down. And you will have to find the strength and love to let them go.

A pet’s time on earth is far too short – especially for those that love them.

We borrow them, really, just for awhile, and during these brief years they are

generous enough to give us all their love, every inch of their spirit and

heart, until one day there is nothing left.

The cat that only yesterday was a kitten is all too soon old and frail

and sleeping in the sun. The young pup of boundless energy wakes up stiff

and lame, the muzzle now gray. Deep down we somehow always knew that this

journey would end. We knew that if we gave our hearts they would be broken.

But give them we must for it is all they ask in return. When the time

comes, and the road curves ahead to a place we cannot see, we give one final

gift and let them run on ahead – young and whole once more. “Godspeed, good

friend,” we say, until our journey comes full circle and our paths cross again.

Philosophy of a Dog

Author unknown, submitted by Denise Duvall

Don’t take this the wrong way, but for the longest time now, I have been trying to imitate my dog. Not his look, which is furry and chestnut brown.
Not his walk, which, as with most dogs, can be more of waddle. And not his tail. I don’t need a tail. I have enough trouble buckling my pants as
it is. Also, I can live without his bathroom habits, which can be summed up this way: “Tree or bush? Tree or bush? Aw, how about right here on
the grass…”

No, what I admire about my dog is his fascination with the simple routine of life. Every day for him is like boarding the space shuttle. For example:
In the morning, I tumble out of bed, grumble, yawn, open the door, and ta-da! There he is, The canine answer to Richard Simmons. He is so worked
up, he doesn’t know which way to go, toward me or away from me. So he does both. “Oh boy oh boy oh boy!” he seems to pant. “It’s morning and I’m
gonna eat!” Never mind that he has eaten every morning since he was born. Or that he’s had the same food every morning since he was born -and that
was 11 years ago. Never mind. He pulls me downstairs and waits breathlessly as I scoop yet another helping of boring brown nuggets into his bowl.
“Oh boy oh boy oh boy! Food, food, food!” I yawn.

Three minutes later, he is off the food thing and into a new obsession: going out. Again, he runs forward and backward. “I’m going out! I’m going out!
Is this great or what?” Never mind that going out has not changed one bit since we’ve lived here. He is so thrilled by the notion of “exit” that
he almost bites the doorknob off. He bolts into the backyard as if heading for Tomorrowland with a sack full of “E” tickets. I slouch and yawn
again. The

great indoors. Then comes the “bathroom” routine, which I already have described. Humans deal with these functions begrudgingly. Not my dog. It’s
a real thrill for him. He scouts for the perfect spot as if looking for beachfront real estate. “Tree or bush? Tree or bush?” And I don’t have
that many trees. Then, once his business is taken care of-and I make a mental note where we’re going to have to shovel come summer – he is off
the going out obsession and onto a new one: going back in. It doesn’t matter than he was in just two minutes ago. “Things have changed! Things
have changed!” he seems to pant. “I gotta get in there! I gotta check it out! Hurry up, hurry up!”

When I open the door, he bolts in, races back and forth-looking for space aliens, I suppose – and when he doesn’t find any, he isn’t disappointed.
Instead, he snarls at some ratty toy he’s played with for months, throws it into the air with his teeth, and watches it land. “Look at that!” he
seems to say. “It goes up, it comes down!” As I make a cup of coffee, he jumps up to watch. “Whatcha doin? Whatcha doin? Coffee, huh? That’s amazing!”
He then clamps onto my leg and does a dance that, were it the early ’50s, I might call the “Hootchie Coo.” I am not sure what he gets out of this-“Oh
boy, a leg! Oh boy, a leg!”-but he seems to be having a better time than many of the dates I’ve had. When I disengage and disappear behind a door,
he lies down outside and waits for me to come out again. If it is only 30 seconds later, he will still react as if I were a released hostage.

The sunny side. Now, my dog does not work. He does not pay taxes. He does not create anything new (unless you consider the bushes outside). But he
also doesn’t need clothes, doesn’t covet cars or jewelry, and doesn’t care about houses, as long as he can find a sunny spot on the floor and lie
there for a few hours. Meanwhile, I am bored with my same routine. Getting up is a drag. I can’t get excited about breakfast. And going out then
coming back only makes me wonder how many flies I’ve let in.

So I’m trying to imitate my dog.I’m trying to find wonder in the everyday. After all, when you think about it, it is pretty remarkable that you open
your eyes each morning. And since every few hours you get to quench

your hunger, well, that’s a thrill, when you consider the alternative. So while I can’t match my dog’s drool, I am trying to match his zeal.

Don’t worry. If you come to visit, I will not clamp on your leg and do the Hootchie Coo. On the other hand, that sunny spot on the floor looks pretty
tempting…

The End… Author Unknown

Unsung Heroes

by Janet Joers (January, 1999)

As we begin a new year, it seems an appropriate time to reflect on the many people who have contributed to the betterment of our breed in ways that
we are not always aware of. The Kerry community owes an enormous debt to the following people.

1. You worked with a research facility to help determine the cause of a disease or medical problem. Whether you cooperated with the USKBTC on cyst
biopsies, or provided other tissue, DNA samples, blood panels, or autopsy reports to research universities, you worked to eliminate disease in
the breed and spare another Kerry (and its owner) pain and suffering.

2. You stayed in touch with your breeder when your address or phone number changed, and you notified him or her when major medical problems arose or
when your Kerry died (for whatever reason). You recognized that breeding healthy, sound Kerries depends on you as well as the breeder. Only with
your input can a breeder adapt a breeding program to eliminate problems.

3. You as a breeder notified those who needed to know when a potentially genetic problem occurred in a litter. Maybe you risked the anger of your puppy
buyers to warn them of a potential problem. Maybe you even risked your reputation as a breeder to do the right thing. Those who would condemn you
don’t belong in this breed (or any breed).

4. You gave time, money, or service to a rescue organization-Kerry or otherwise. Maybe you sent a check to your local or national Kerry Rescue effort,
or rescued, placed, fostered, or adopted an abandoned Kerry and helped restore its health and confidence. Or maybe you volunteered at your local
animal shelter or rescue organization and helped educate the staff about Kerries. All of you have helped save a Kerry from a miserable life.

5. You participated on the KB-L internet newslist and answered a Kerry owner’s request for help-even if it was only one request last year-privately
or otherwise, and provided information on a topic you had experience with. Whether it was about training, nutrition, health, grooming, or anything
else, you helped another Kerry owner do what was right for his dog.

Your contributions have helped save or improve the lives of one Kerry or generations of Kerries. You are the unsung heroes of the breed. We couldn’t
do without you. Thanks to all of you!

If you can…

Author unknown, submited by Maryanne Schaefer

If you can start the day without caffeine,

If you can get going without pep pills,

If you can always be cheerful, ignoring aches and pains,

If you can resist complaining and boring people with your troubles,

If you can eat the same food everyday and be grateful for it,

If you can understand when your loved ones are too busy to give you any time,

If you can overlook it when those you love take it out on you when, through no fault of yours, something goes wrong,

If you can take criticism and blame without resentment,

If you can ignore a friend’s limited education and never correct him,

If you can resist treating a rich friend better than a poor friend,

If you can face the world without lies and deceit,

If you can conquer tension without medical help,

If you can relax without liquor,

If you can sleep without the aid of drugs,

If you can say honestly that deep in your heart you have no prejudice against creed, color, religion or politics,

Then, my friend, you are ALMOST as good as your [Kerry Blue]!

Things we can learn from our Kerry Blue

Author unknown, submitted by Nancy McMillan and others

  • If you stare at someone long enough, eventually you’ll get what you want.
  • Don’t go out without I.D.
  • Be direct with people; let them know exactly how you feel by piddling on their shoes.
  • Be aware of when to hold your tongue, and when to use it.
  • Leave room in your schedule for a good nap.
  • Always give people a friendly greeting – a cold nose in the crotch is effective.
  • When you do something wrong, always take responsibility (as soon as you’re dragged out from under the bed).
  • If it’s not wet and sloppy, it’s not a real kiss.Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride.
  • Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure ecstasy.
  • When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.
  • When it’s in your best interest, practice obedience.
  • Let others know when they’ve invaded your territory.
  • Take naps and stretch before rising.
  • Run, romp and play daily.
  • Eat with gusto and enthusiasm.
  • Be loyal.
  • Never pretend to be something you’re not.
  • If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.
  • When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by and nuzzle them gently.
  • Thrive on attention and let people touch you.
  • Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.
  • On hot days, drink lots of water and lay under a shady tree.
  • When you’re happy, dance around and wag your entire body.
  • No matter how often you’re scolded, don’t buy into the guilt thing and pout. Run right back and make friends.
  • Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.

We are alone, absolutely alone on this chance planet, and, amid all the forms of life that surround us, not one, excepting the dog, has made an alliance
with us.

Maurice Maeterlinck

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