Tesla’s Love is the blog for and about people who love animals. No one here cares whether it walks, crawls, swims, slithers, hobbles or knows how to fly, if there is a story about an animal that you love or loves you, this is the place to share that story. The story can be a tribute, a love story or a memorial. It can be about you, this truly is a site for people. Send your story and photos to teslaslove@gmail.com and we promise to post it here.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A member of the family

By Maureen Green

I have wanted a Bernese Mountain dog since the very first time that I saw one, and that was 10 years ago.
But the cost prevented me from getting one.
Since then, I have adopted adult dogs that need a home but they all came with their own unique set of issues that I could not solve despite hard work.
We had, for instance, a male black lab, Bear, and a female black lab, Bailey.
They were both good dogs and loving pets but things changed for Bear when our son, Jack, was born. The dog suddenly seemed anxious and a bit more excitable. Bailey on the other hand became nurturing toward the baby. On one occasion when we put Jack on the floor to be photographed with the dogs, Bear would have nothing to do with it and Bailey lay on her side and slithered over to Jack as if to nurse him! She remained affectionate toward Jack and allowed him to crawl on her and let him pull on her to lift himself up as a toddler.
But we had to find Bear a new home because he attacked Jack and bit him in the face. It was a shock because Jack was on the other side of the room from Bear and did not provoke the dog. I think that the dog was jealous because Bailey turned her attention from him to the baby. But soon after Bear left, Bailey became withdrawn and started to whine and howl. Jack also became afraid of her so we thought it best to find her another home too.
Last year, when our family was dealing with many hardships, I thought 'no better time than now' to get another puppy! I also was convinced that a Bernese Mountain dog would be the only breed to lift our spirits.
I searched and searched and was blessed the day I met a breeder from Boulder with a litter of pups she was offering at an affordable price.
That is when I got Kernan Von Bruno. Even his name has a story. It had to have meaning and it had to be Swiss like him. My brother Chip told me about a Swiss skier named Bruno Kernan who won the world championship in 1997 and he went on to tell me that Bruno Kernan’s cousin also named Bruno Kernan skied with Chip in Austria.

Hey, I skied there too, so it was decided we would not call him Bruno, but Kernan, and make it fancy smancy with Von Bruno!
He was so very perfect that I had to convince Helen to get one too. She agreed and we picked up Tesla and brought her home with us until we flew her to Helen in Connecticut.
It was great to be able to share stories of about our magnificent dogs. Each was perfect for our respective families.

We had more than a year of sharing until Tesla died.
I grieved with my sister and cried for Tesla but Helen explained to me what love for a dog is and told me how Tesla had truly benefited her family.
Kernan is now 18 months and full of love for every one. He is big and beautiful but he acts like he can still fit in my lap.
He has truly filled my ‘dog void’ and made himself a natural part of our whole family. The curmudgeon husband Todd even loves him! He is my full time training partner and encourages me to get out and run even on the coldest days. He is always willing to pull me up the hills too.

This year he has a real dog sledding harness and Jack is looking forward to having Kernan help him get up the hills as well!
Kernan loves us all but seems to heed to me best and Jack wanted a dog of his own so he recently got Karbon, a 12-week-old black Labrador.
Well Kernan has made it obvious to all of us that he is the one responsible for Karbon’s training.
Kernan blocks the pup’s access to the road and herds him back into the yard a safe distance from harm.
We have also heard Kernan remonstrating when the little pup attempts any behavior, that Kernan regards as unacceptable: thank goodness like doing his toileting business in the house! I have even seen Kernan put himself in the way of Ice, the cat, to protect the pup from Ice’s bullying.
I am not able to describe the love and loyalty that we have in our family since Kernan came into our lives. I can say though that this dog is the pet of all my dreams.


Patti said...

Aw, you make me want to have a dog of my own.
But I have two kitties to drive me crazy, I mean love!

Lovely story.

caringmom said...

What a great story Maureen about another hero Bernese mountain dog. Love, Daithi