A friend recommended we try a Golden Retriever. After some research we started looking around. There were a lot of them available from breeders, especially down South, but nothing up here.
Then one day, we came across a little Buddy, just 3 months old. He was such a cute little thing, and he was definitely on his best behavior. He did all the things dogs in that position do, that say "Pick Me, Pick Me!" So we did.
Somehow, it never crossed our minds that 14 months later, our cute little Buddy would become a 70 pound Big Buddy. But that's what he's become. Now he's more than twice the size of our now four year old.
Fortunately, for such an exuberant dog, Buddy's also developed a strong sense of restraint when they play together. He's amazingly strong. So it's doubly amazing what he lets the kids get away with. He really loves those kids.
He lets them pull him around, hang all over him, and generally do lots of mischief guaranteed to start a fun fight. But he just takes it with a grin. It's almost as if he understands that "this one, you leave alone." Now that's loyalty. But man, if I get down to wrestle or play chase, it's "Game On, No Mercy."
I also love his attitude about things. Some dogs are whiners. We've all seen them. Talk about annoying. They're never satisfied. But Buddy just waits patiently for the next opportunity to come along. If we're not ready to roll with him, he just says: "Rokay" and lays back down until we get with the program.
He's not too pushy when we're trying to eat, either. Don't get me wrong, it's amazing how fast he inhales anything that happens to hit the floor. I watched him scarf Michael's entire sandwich one time when he accidentally dropped it. We'll have to work on that.
One of thing the coolest things about Buddy is his Indomitable Spirit. This is one of the five tenants of martial arts, that basically means "Never quit, never give up. Ever." He's got this in spades!
He's never caught those birds that take off out in front of us. Not one time. But every day, it's on! He's also never caught a vehicle going away from us, but every day, it's on!
When it's all over, and he comes up short (again), he doesn't cry about it, or quit trying. He just moves on to something else temporarily. The next time we flush out a bird or two, he announces he's coming and watch out! Now that's a winning attitude. We can learn a lot from our little Buddy!