I was always envious of people who had animals that snuggled and cuddled with one another. Freya and Lasya merely tolerated each other's presence and the few fights they had over the years made me seriously question whether or not I'd have two dogs - especially two females - again. Pamela's lovely post at Something Wagging This Way Comes yesterday reminded me that while generalizations can be backed up by examples, so can exceptions.
It's no secret that I hand-picked Boca out of a dozen other dogs that were ear-marked by Ruby's rescue group for hopeful air-lift to Colorado, but had fully intended to foster her and adopt her out. She caught my attention because of her coloration, smaller size than the typical potcake, and her irresistible smile. None of those things had any bearing or any prediction of how she and Ruby would get along, matching coats or not. I have heard that choosing a second dog that is smaller, younger, and the opposite sex of your existing dog puts the odds in favor of harmony, and Boca was bigger, older and same sex. I believe that due to their individual natures, Ruby's willingness and enthusiasm for sharing her home, beds and toys and Boca's endless patience and easygoing gentleness, it was a match made in heaven.
Boca is a great role model, and Ruby tends to follow her lead for their daily routines. A little sleepy wrestling before breakfast, sunbathing for most of the late morning and afternoon, a wild rumpus before their evening walk, chewing time before bed. Ruby's life is so much richer with Boca in the picture, and I find myself wondering what we ever did without her. Their interactions are endearing and adorable, and Boca's big sister attitude and firm but fair corrections when Ruby crosses the line are teaching me even more about dog behavior.
It's just incredible to me that these two gingery dogs from different countries - one who found herself on death row in an overcrowded shelter in the southern United States when she was less than a year old, and one who spent her early life sick and starving on the street and the past year in a tropical shelter that resembles a dog park - could adjust so easily to life in a home, coexist so perfectly and have so much love to give every day. These girls are such a gift: to each other, and most of all to me.