Honoring Denby by Giving Back

One of the things that I really find amazing and wonderful about Corgi Nation, is the sense of community that we have together.  Denby Dog introduced Rugby and I to all of that, once Rugby had his own page.  Again, I never expected to see much traffic on his page, because Rugby is just a little no account, throw-away dog with uncertain parentage.  He’s only a champion in my heart.  But what a champion he is.

Happi was never without a huge smile on her face!

Each of us have such special dogs who have captured our hearts in dramatic ways.  I train dogs that I love almost every day of the week, and I thought I would die when my Corgi, Happi, went to the Bridge.  I didn’t know how I would live without her.  But life goes on, and when our hearts heal, we’re ready to give them to another dog and amazingly begin that process all over again.

Insert Rugby James here.  Rugby has a vulnerability….a fragility about him as a rescue, that makes him a dog who has captured my heart in a very different way.  He’s taught me so so much about what life really should be about.  He needs a very tender training hand and extremely kind touch.  I have worked so hard, and fought for every bit of Rugby’s trust, and that’s been one hard fought battle for sure.

The longer I live, the more I’ve come to think that all of us need that same tender, kind treatment from others in our world.  We’re all vulnerable and fragile in our own ways.  Some of us trust more easily than others.  Some of us may be more purebred and some of us just little mutt humans who didn’t get a great start in life.  We’re rescues, hoping for love….looking for our place in the world where we’ll fit and be welcome.

Denby Dog paved a way for Rugby and I to find that community of love and acceptance.  Corgi Nation has grafted Rugby and I into its folds, and we’ve found a place to hang our hats and piggies, respectively.  It still amazes me that Rugby is so loved by anyone except me, but I feel the love from total strangers every single day on his  Facebook page, and now this blog.  And I have Denby Dog to thank for that.

He was so scared his first night with me.

So how do I thank a little dog in a cart for giving Rugby and I our place in the world?  What could I possibly say or do, that would ever be a fitting tribute to this little dog who has changed our lives?  I can only think of one thing.  I try, as best I can, to carry on Denby’s legacy of love, kindness, encouragement and hope.  Rugby and I pay it forward to others.  While Denby Dog had his focus and heart on dogs with DM or other physical challenges,  Rugby’s focus is on dogs with emotional issues.  It’s different, but the same.  Denby Dog’s DM couldn’t be fixed, and neither can Rugby’s emotional issues.

He’s so happy with a small world.

I’d give anything to be able to share the big world with Rugby….to take him everywhere with me….to let him be adored by friends and strangers alike.  But that’s just not to be for my little speckled and spotted dogger.  He needs and wants a very small, safe world for himself, and that’s okay.  It has to be, because I don’t have a choice for him.

Sometimes in life, choices are made for us, rather than giving us the opportunity to actually “choose” what we want in our circumstances. You play the cards that life deals to you, and you hope you get a winning hand at the end of the day.  And that’s the funny thing about Rugby. Most people would say that I got dealt a bad hand with him, but they’d be wrong.  My life, my world, and my heart have been changed by two very special dogs:  Denby Dog, and Rugby James.  And I can ensure that both of them will never be forgotten, by paying it forward.


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