by Deborah Joyner
I lost my Shane to cancer on June 20, 2003. There is no harder way to lose a friend, a parent, or a loving companion that has been with you for seven years. There is no barking, no squeaky toys and no dog kisses. Life was very quiet and very lonely. Kitty tried to console me and did the best she could, but that really wasn't enough.
After four months, I was ready to start "the search" and knew Barb and John Schuster who are greatly involved with CPCRN, from a quilting run to Reno with some friends. I made the contacts with the awesome people at CPCRN and waited for my prince/princess. I met up with the "Cairn people" in Dixon, CA and made some wonderful new friends.
Doc came to me in October or November 2003. I can't really remember the month. It seems like I've had Doc a long, long time. He's 12 years young and doesn't really see or hear that well. He had quite a gait when he walked and slept a lot because he's an old coot! Doc Joyner went to see Doc Fred and they are friends. Doc Joyner has a clean bill of health and had three teeth removed last Thursday. He's been on Jointcare treats for three weeks and he is much improved in his walk, his attitude and his life.
As far as communication goes, I refuse to raise my voice at Doc to communicate since he is hard of hearing. I took a few classes in American Sign Language while working with a human Program Manager in the California Department of Rehabilitation. He was deaf and I learned sign language so I could talk to him and his assistant. With Doc, I use some simple signs and we have one or two "home signs" we use just between us. Doc is so smart. He is learning the signs very quickly and I reinforce a few times daily with treats. Doc is VERY treat motivated.
Doc is well traveled. He has been to two quilt guild meetings to show off his "blankie" made by his foster mom, Linda Wilder, especially for him. All of the ladies in the quilt guilds love him and I spoke a few minutes about Doc and CPCRN Cairn Rescue program. He is a perfect little gentleman everywhere we go.
Our lives are good and full. I needed Doc and he needed me. He did not replace anyone. He just entered my life and I am a better person for it.
Thank you to all of the volunteers at CPCRN.