The Joy of Fitz: No Small Gift

The Joy of Fitz: No Small Gift

The Joy of Fitz: No Small Gift

Writings about residential real estate, San Francisco, and all things home, by Shelly Sutherland, Kindred SF Homes Associate

I lost my dog in February and mourned her deeply. As I reentered the world, I began to relish all the newfound freedom. 

No more early departures from dinner parties to make sure my dog got out after being inside for 5 hours! Whole days/nights to be spontaneous for whatever reason! Enjoying a long lunch with a friend then accepting a last-minute invitation to join another friend for dinner and music! Taking multiple vacations without the additional management and costs of dog sitters!

I was unfettered and fun and I felt like a kid again.

So, it was quite startling when, immediately after a European holiday, I found myself at the SFSPCA on a Sunday afternoon. I had convinced myself that I was just looking. But once I saw this adorable furry creature, all memories of my recent freedoms evaporated.

Next thing I knew, I was enthralled. I’d adopted dog #3, named Fitz. And I was in the throes of managing a new pooch. 

For some folks, the pull of having a pet is simply too strong, and it seems that I’m one of those people. 

This is what I have gained from having a dog in my life:

  • Smiling more at the exchange between human and dog
  • Meeting more people on the streets and parks
  • Exercise…rain or shine
  • Attainment of keen senses as in watching/smelling/listening for squirrels, electric cars, human excrement (a city thing!)
  • Continuing to learn about the major life lessons like patience, the illusion of control, and being in the moment

The last bullet point is a biggie. There’s so much to learn and so much joy to experience from interaction with animals. As Mary Oliver writes in Dog Songs, “Because of the dog's joyfulness, our own is increased. It is no small gift. It is not the least reason why we should honor as well as love the dog of our own life, and the dog down the street, and all the dogs not yet born. What would the world be like without music or rivers or the green and tender grass? What would this world be like without dogs?”

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