Friday, March 12, 2010


Barbara J. Galasso

You struggled to be born into this world while your momma pushed and pushed and I gently pulled you to safety while you cried and screamed…..sometimes I ask too much of you.

Oh you were special from the start…..that’s why I taught you how to stand for examination and taught you how to pull out on a leash while your littermates ran around chasing after their toys.…..sometimes I ask too much of you.

You’re bathed and groomed and smelling so “yummy” while your littermates roll around in the grass and exhibit the tell tale dirt around the nose as a testament to how much fun they’re having……sometimes I ask too much of you.

You watch over and protect my little Johnny and Sarah as they play in the back yard while I cook dinner for the family.….sometimes I ask too much of you.

When it’s late at night and the winds are howling and it’s dark and bleak, we hear a noise outside our back door, and you jump up barking and running from window to window until I open the door so you can investigate.….sometimes I ask too much of you.

When old Mrs. Henley, lonely and blue lies in her bed at her new residency known as the nursery home, you as a therapy dog are sent in to cheer her up and put a smile on her face..….sometimes I ask too much of you.

When little six year old Tommy Miller ventures out on the pond and falls through the ice, because you are a rescue dog, you are sent with a rope wrapped around your waist into the frigid water to pull the trembling boy to safety…....sometimes I ask too much of you.

When you are the first one to step off the curb onto the street to lead the blind man who cautiously follows you while the scary noises of cars and trucks feverishly beep their horns..…..sometimes I ask too much of you.

When you are shipped across the United States and are greeted by a stranger known as a “handler” that takes you to an unfamiliar kennel where you’ll live for the next six months so you can be campaigned towards your championship……sometimes I ask too much of you.

You’re shown at the big National Specialty Show which costs me a fortune for a handler, air fare and hotel. You take a reserve. I am disappointed. You should have won the points I mumble. People congratulate us. Let’s celebrate they say. You’re tired and hungry and would much rather be home…….sometimes I ask too much of you.

When I breed you to that famous dog and you suffer to bring ten little puppies into this world just so I can say I bred a champion or two..….sometimes I ask too much of you.

When you are the first one in the line of duty, and you are commanded to attack the criminal who turns with a knife in his hand and you take that stab rather than the police man…...sometimes I ask too much of you.

When you are sent with the soldiers to a foreign country and they go to investigate an oncoming troop of enemies, you are the first one sent to go forward and the first one to take the assaulting bullet.…..sometimes I ask too much of you.

When you get old and gray and arthritis has robbed you of your youthful gait and the light of life slowly fades from your eyes, you look up to meet my tear stained face as if to plead “today’s the day”, and instead I say, “No. One more day, just give me one more day”.…..sometimes I ask too much of you.

And now as I hold and gently rock you in my arms and the reality of life without you sets in, I kiss your forehead and tell you “Its okay girl, your work here is done, so go on ahead to heaven which you have rightfully earned. And if God should see fit, could I dare, could I hope, could I ask one more thing of you? Would you then dear friend hold the Pearly Gates open for me?’ I know..….sometimes I ask too much of you.”


From the book: "MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life: A Story of Love"... The memoir of a love affair between a woman and her dog...Maggie was a special dog--a beautiful and exuberant black lab who gave years of unconditional love to her owner Kairns. Throughout their years together, Maggie taught Kairns much about the emotional intelligence of animals and the importance of trusting one's intuition when caring for a pet...Kairns offers a tantalizing glimpse into the possibility that her bond with Maggie was so deep that she had prophetic dreams in which she undiagnosed cancer...Tenderhearted and sincere... Dawn Kairns' latest book, MAGGIE: The Dog Who Changed My Life: A Story of Love, seeks to show the unconditional love animals are capable of giving to their human counterparts. She tells the story of her Labrador Retriever, Maggie, and their deep, emotional, and spiritual bond, which surpasses expectations and teaches Kairns more about dogs than she ever knew. MAGGIE raises questions about life and beliefs and demonstrates the canine ability to sense human thoughts and feelings, weaving the two species together in a tight bond. Kairns has not only written a pet memoir, but one that aims to bring the reader to a higher level of thinking about our four-legged friends. --Jill Brodsky, Rocky Mountain Pet Tails Magazine, October, 2008

My rating: living with and loving dogs: (4)


  1. It was a beautiful late winter, early spring afternoon as we were driving by the bog. Kiz was wistfully gazing out of the car window; perhaps remembering times gone by when she would walk the bog with her old friend Krunch1..long since crossed over. I thought it would be nice to surprise her and and attempt a walk, even though my arthritic knees were grumbling.
    As she clambered out of the car, eyes shining with anticipation I thought I had made the right decision for my old gal.
    We started off with a quick step, heading on a left turn around the bog. The earth was damp and full of interesting smells, which Kizzy took in eagerly. We chatted while we walked, not noticing that little by little, we were slowing down. The eyes that were looking forward to investigating the ducks were busily looking back over her shoulder, searching for our car.
    At the half way point, her insistance became undeniable when she began nosing my knee...her eyes meeting mine in a knowing gaze.
    "Want to go home, babygirl?" I asked, and with that she turned on her heel and began a wobbly beeline back to the sanctity of her comforter on the back seat. It was the longest walk I have ever taken with this dog who has given me so very much...and of whom so much was asked.

  2. Barbara,
    What a lovely article, "Sometimes I Ask Too Much of You." I'm honored that you shared my Amazon book badge and my book description with your beautifully written article. Thank you!

  3. How lovely of you to write to me Dawn. I thought that your book about "Maggie" would fit in with my topic yesterday. I appreciate you writing to me and I'm glad you enjoyed my article. Dogs are love........Barbara

  4. Hi: Thank you so much for your wonderful comment. I'm glad that you are enjoying my blog and that you are now a follower. I also just signed up for your informative blog about caring for the German Shepherd! Should be fun!