Biographical Non-Fiction posted September 12, 2017

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Holding On to Love

by doggymad

The author has placed a warning on this post for language.

The first few years of my life were lonely ones. Surrendered to the care of social services, I spent over two years being moved from orphanages to hospitals, from foster care to adoption. In those formative years, the only attachment I formed was with a battered teddy bear which accompanied me on my every journey.

My relationships with humans were so transient that I could never bond with people, a legacy that lasted for many years. For some reason, even at age three, I found it easier to create relationships with animals. It is possible that even then I sensed that they would not reject me as others had.

It was on the occasion of my first visit to my uncle's farm that I fell totally and completely in love with his sheepdog that went by the original title of 'Shep.' Back then nearly every farmer had a dog called Shep. I later learned that it was an abbreviation of the term sheepdog.

Shep and I went everywhere together; we roamed the country lanes, rounded up the cattle, and paddled in the nearby river. In between times, we snuggled up in the hay shed, just enjoying the peace.

Then one day, the unthinkable happened. My aunt invited her niece to stay while I was there. This girl had plenty of money and literally bought Shep's affections by offering him more titbits than I could ever afford. It was a devastating experience for me to watch him abandon me in exchange for a higher bidder.

As I sat there sobbing my heart out this rich bitch handed me a square of chocolate in order to placate me. In a fit of pique, I threw the pathetic offering back at her. Although she could not have known, there was nothing on this earth that could ease the agony that I felt at being betrayed by the one creature that meant the world to me.

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Photo is of Rodge who looks very like Shep
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