Maria encourages Rocky to come inside. The first thing Maria and I did after closing on the new house was to go give Rocky a new home. Rocky has always been loved and cared for, but as his beloved owner aged and struggled, and the barns filled up with family belongings or collapsed, Rocky was left outside in the pasture for the last 15 years. He had the shade of trees and water, but no shelter from ice, rain or the summer heat and flies. It was what he was used to, and he is healthy and strong except for his blindness. But it is not our way and we felt he needed the option of shelter.
So when the family cleared the barns out we put some bedding in one of the old cow stalls and set it up so that Rocky can go in and out as he pleases, if he pleases. Maria has established a strong bond with Rocky, as I have, but he is totally blind and was clearly unnerved at climbing the step into the stall. Maria got some grain and put in a pain. She talked to him, coaxed him, encouraged him. At one point, Red joined in – there is no work this dog does not want to join in and he and Rocky also seem very at ease with one another. It was poignant to see this blind creature use his nose and smell and hooves to feel his way to the step. You can see what happened better than I can explain it in the photos. I am putting them up on Facebook. Come and see. It was a defining moment for Maria and I and our new home, it set the tone we wish to set. Rocky drew us to this house, introduced us to Florence Walrath and her beautiful home, which we are now lucky enough to own. He has a roomy stall with hay and bedding if and when he wants it.
I was deeply moved watching this ballet of trust and love. Florence loved Rocky and worried deeply about his fate after she died. I suspect her spirit is resting easier. Album on Facebook.