Sunday, August 14, 2011

Rant # 8

Today it's Charlie's turn to have his story told. He came to us in a very different way than Roxy did but his story is no less remarkable.

Jon and I are in the habit of going out for coffee early in the morning. We go to a local place called Koffi where they have a big courtyard and everyone brings their dog along. Roxy always loved it and she had a lot of puppy dog friends.

After our coffee one morning, we were on our way home when we came across a young man sitting on a public bench with his dog on the bench by his side. He had a lot of personal belongings sitting on the ground and I just had to stop and talk with him. It was obvious that he was homeless. We stopped and I started to offer my hand to his dog for inspection. He immediately informed me that his dog hated strangers and didn't get along with other dogs. I said, "oh really?" and offered my downturned hand to the dog. He licked it and then proceeded to jump off the bench to find out what Roxy was all about. The homeless guy was stunned.

He told me the story of his life. Just one of the many stories that I have become accustomed to hearing. I counsel homeless people for free every week. He told me that the city of Palm Springs had given him a free bus ticket to go back home to his mother in Wisconsin but he didn't know what to do about his dog. Well!

By now my faithful readers can guess what I did next. I told him that I would take his dog and find him a good home. The poor guy broke down in tears and said goodbye to his 16 month old pup. Jon, Roxy, the pup, and I went on our way home. I was wondering what the heck I had gotten us into. The dog's name was Pablo but I said to Jon tht he looked more like a Charlie. Within minutes of our arrival home I could see that he and Roxy were in love. Roxy introduced him to her food and water dishes. That was good enough for me. I knew we had a new family member.

We immediately started socializing our new boy. He WAS afraid of people and other dogs. We took him to Koffi every morning and slowly introduced him to other people and other dogs. He saw how loving Roxy was towards every creature and slowly he got the idea. We trained him with love and patience. We created a love monster! Now he loves everyone and every dog he sees. Good thing we keep him on a leash.

The message in all this is that the love we give has an amazing impact. It can change the most damaged among us in a fairly short time. Granted people are a bit more challenging, but love can heal all kinds of damage. Charlie reminds us every day of the healing power of love.

Peace and love,



  1. Bill that is a beautiful "tale" about your dog! Loved it!

  2. A lovely story. People could (and should) learn a lot from animals. Bless you for caring for both animals and humans.

  3. Charlie is adorable!!! When I see homeless people with dogs, I want so bad to offer them money for the dog. I worry that they are not being taken care of and they probably aren't.
    I would have to start my own shelter if I did that and would probably be divorced!!!!

    Charlie is a very lucky dog!

  4. Bill, This is such a heartwarming story on so many levels. It shows the love you have in your heart to (1) volunteer to help the homeless; (2) stop to talk with the homeless guy (who needed you in his life at that moment); (3) adopt a dog who might have been challenging (but worth it). That's just to name a few! :-) What a great story to start my day. Thank you for sharing the story of both Charlie and Roxy. Hugs and pets to Charlie & Roxy!!

    caregiving. family. advocacy.