I recently had an almost “heavenly” experience when I was privileged to be reuniting a service dog to his most special little owner. Prior to being with me for training, Jasper had been with Takota since he was a young pup. From the pictures I had seen, the even very young Jasper appeared to understand that his little boy was in need of his devotion and care, as he was always touching his best little buddy.
I experienced a brief moment during our reuniting and training where I seemed as an outsider getting a glimpse at something amazing. It was not about me as a trainer. Nor was it even about Jasper and his superb breeding, or all the skills he had mastered in learning to carry oxygen tanks for Takota. It was a something much deeper, more innocent and surreal. I believe I saw an impenetrable bond between dog and child, the kind of bond we adults try to foster with our dogs when so often our human failings gets in the way!
Just recently we wrote a news story about a guide dog who sacrificed his own life to save his master’s four year old son from a oncoming car.
Accounts such as these should make us pause, reflect, and respect. I’m not certain that there is a logical explanation. It is not anything you can measure or touch or maybe even learn. Perhaps we should believe as a child and sense the magic!