When we found Leia at the PW County animal shelter she had "growls at children" in her criminal record. Perhaps this would have scared anyone adopting a 50 lb animal but Nick knew she was the dog for us when he went to get her. He could not have been any more right.
We had been looking and praying for a dog for months before we found her online. She looked like a huge puff ball with long matted fur! She had been a stray and we believe she came from an abusive situation. Aparently she had been adopted by a family with young children and "growled at them". When bringing home a new pet, it is so important to give them space, especially with children involved. We found out in the first few weeks that Leia growled for everything... when getting her tummy rubbed, when playing, when meeting children, etc. It is her way of communicating. We also learned within a few months that we had adopted a very very sick dog. She had Cryptococcus, a fungus that attacks the brain. When I found a collapsed, unresponive dog, I was sure she was going to die. Thanks to a wonderful Doggy neurologist (Dr. Tiches), Leia is still our beloved house pet and friend.
"There is a reason your dog is alive. Maybe she will save your child's life or something--you never know."
Husky's are known for their amazing sensitivities, so I am assured that Leia knew what was going on the whole time I was pregnant. Perhaps before I even knew! All I know is that when we brought home our noisey little bundle, Leia stayed right beside her for the first day. She slept right beside her cradle and when I went to change her diaper, Leia was right there! It was the sweetest thing... that just recently got sweeter. Now that A. doesn't yank her fur out, Leia enjoys Anastasia's constant attention. A. has been ultra snuggly now that she isn't nursing and finds Leia the ultimate snuggling companion. It is truley the most beautiful thing and it makes me smile and cry at the same moment as Anastasia buries her little head in Leia's fur with her arms in a big hug. Leia doesn't mind at all and even seems to put herself in the situation of being cuddled. A. giggles when Leia licks her face in return.
Sometimes Leia gives credit to Radar's quote from M*A*S*H, "Animals are people too." Perhaps they aren't people... but they are definately souls of a sort who God sends us for a purpose. In the words of a veterinarian (Dr. Augustine) at AAH, "There is a reason your dog is alive. Maybe she will save your child's life or something--you never know."