Our very own Marjorie, the generous creator of all those beautiful Wiggins Woolies, has written the following heart-warming story about a remarkable golden retriever named Sajo. This is the first installment of a four-part series, The Story of Sajo, that Marjorie is doing for Dogpawfile Magazine. Thank you, Marjorie!
The Story of Sajo, the Angel in Golden Fur
On a sultry afternoon in June, I found myself at the pet store, my two year old son climbing the bags of dog food as I scanned the bulletin board. I love to read the ads in the paper, and every week, I would check the dogs for sale ads in our local shoppers’ magazine. I am a creature of habit. On this particular day, I saw a sign for a Golden Retriever in need of a good home. It read: “Older Golden needs home, owners moving to retirement home, and can no longer care for this wonderful dog.” I jotted down the number. Scooping my wriggling son off the food bags, I then paid for my purchases, and headed home.
When my husband and I married, we each had a dog. Mine was a lovely mutt that would fetch sticks and swim and play all day if you would let her. Regrettably, she died too young. My husband had a little beagle/corgi mix that had been afraid of her shadow. When she met my dog, she had blossomed. Now eight years in to our marriage, his dog was still with us, but getting old and cranky. I had always wanted a Golden ~ one that was already trained would be perfect! With a little coaxing, I got my husband to come around to the idea, and I called about the dog.
Her name was Sajo. She was a large Golden, and this was her second family. Her previous owners had moved out of the country, and left her with this family, but they were very old now, and could no longer care for her. My heart melted. So I bundled my son, now ready for a nap, into the car, and headed off to see her. My eldest was with his Nana for the day, so we would surprise him when he got home. I was heart-set on rescuing this lovely creature.
Pulling up to the house, I didn’t see the dog anywhere. I got out of the car and went to knock on the door. I didn’t hear a bark. I waited, and shortly an elderly woman, bent by age and time, answered the door. She smiled at me, and said she and her husband would be right out. The man was stooped and crooked, his hands gnarled by the work he had done over the years. He walked slowly, the steps from the porch to the grass seemed a painful exercise for him. His smile was bright as his eyes. He shook my hand, and told me he sure hoped I would take the dog. He called Sajo, and as his wife stood holding the door, this gentle creature appeared. She too was bent and twisted.
“She was hit by a car when she was with her last owners,” The man told me. “They never got her seen to.”
Sajo limped forward, her eyes bright and shining. Her one front paw was turned out at a painful looking angle. I lowered myself to the ground to greet her as she came forward. The steps were hard, and I watched as her body weight propelled her down a little faster than she cared to go. Her tail was wagging and she smiled – really truly smiled at me. I held my arms out to her, and she came right into them, pressing her soft golden head against my chest. I wrapped my arms around her, rubbed her ears, and told her I was here to bring her HOME.
My son woke from his nap just then. So I went to get him from the car so he could meet her. His eyes danced with delight at the sight of her beautiful golden coat. They eyed each other for a moment, and then she went over and pressed her head into him too. He wrapped his arms around Sajo, as I had, and held her.
“BIG Doggy!” He laughed.
“Yes, Brock! A very Big Doggy!” I assured him.
“MINE!” He said, and looked questioningly at the old couple.
I took a lot of flack from people for bringing this old girl home. As I will explain in the next installment of Sajo’s Story, Sajo was a special gift for us as a family, an angel in golden fur.
Coming soon: Part 2 of Sajo’s tale ~ Sajo learns to play with the children, and the family’s surprising reward for loving her!