Today I looked out my window and saw Prince 1 walking with a sweet, loving, 4 month old, 44 lbs. and already- huge German Shepherd, while he did his animal chores on the ranch. I saw a German Shepherd walking next to our son. Something I have not seen in over 5 weeks and it has brought me to tears. I saw a new bond forming as I watched our son reach down and pet her. I heard a strong bond forming as I heard him call her to him, she came, and he bent down and talked in his soft, yet deep voice lovingly towards her.:-) Here is the story of Isabella and Prince 1.
Many of you have followed our story of Prince 1 and his daily struggles, along with the loss of his beloved Foxy. Well, let’s back up here about 8 weeks or so ago. I sat down and mentioned to Prince 1 in a talk, that maybe he might like to have a service dog due to some struggles he has in day-to-day life. He immediately told me he did not need one. He told me he would never take a service dog away from someone else who might be blind or have more struggles and that he needed to use his own brain, not a dog. I shared some articles with him about service dogs, but he remained adamantly against one. Then just about 3 weeks later Foxy, his beloved German Shepherd, suddenly died of a rare heart tumor that burst. Many tears were shed. Many talks were had. I began immediately praying that the Lord would provide a service dog for Prince 1. Maybe a week later I contacted many German Shepherd breeders, sharing a little of our story and asking if they had any connection to a dog for our son.
I only heard back from a handful of breeders. One did not have any connection. Another had a 6 year old dog available. And another said she’d ask her breeder friends. The others did not respond to me. So, we began the walk of considering the 6 year old dog. Then it quickly turned into Aster, the 1.5 year old dog who was all the way across the country. We thought we had “the” dog for our son found. We began praying about how to get her here to Prince 1. The lady could not ship her out of her local airport due to her weight. We had friends call us and wake us one morning to say that one of their friends was driving through TN, could they pick up the dog? We tried, but failed at coordinating that time. Then we made new friends who volunteered to drive from IN to TN to pick up the dog. From IN, she was to go with dear friends of ours to NE, where Steve and Prince 1 would meet up with them yesterday. All the plans were set until last Sat. morn. when I received a call from our dear friend in IN saying she had suddenly lost her great niece in an accident and her knee was in so much pain she could not drive.
Ironically, during those 3 weeks, this lady (breeder in IA) had been emailing me almost weekly that she was still trying to find a dog for our son. I had decided ( you know what happens when we don’t pray about it, don’t you?) on my own that nothing would really come to fruition with this lady, so, I basically ignored her emails! I did respond back one time with our location and that was about it. Well, on Sat. morn. I received an email from this lady again saying she had 2 possible situations to match up a dog with our son. I again ignored it. I did for “some reason” though decide to look at her website again. Once on her website, I felt compelled to look at her dogs she planned to breed in the future. I skimmed over them, but “for some reason” stopped halfway down at this sweet little girl who had a bent ear. I read about how her littermate had stretched the tendons and that her ear may never stand up properly. I read that it was not a genetic issue too. Then, I hopped off the computer.
Next, came the phone call from our friends in IN. It took me another hour before I felt compelled to tell Steve about the email. He told me that I should call the lady. So, I did. That was the first time when I spoke to my new friend, Waynelle. Waynelle said that one of the possibilities she had spoke about in the email had suddenly become not a possibility, but she did have this one dog- 4 months old, female, bent ear. I excitedly asked if it was Isabella because “for some reason” I had just seen her that morning on the website. It was! Her concern with breeding her was if she did breed her in the future, people might think her bent ear was a genetic issue and judge her(Isabella) and the puppies. She would have a harder time selling the puppies. I shared with her more of our son’s story and how he has been judged many times due to some of what people see/hear with him. We talked for a few minutes and then I asked her how much she wanted for her. There was a pause and then she said she just wanted to give her to our son. She said we had been on her heart for the past few weeks and she wanted to give Isabella to him.
Isabella has been Waynelle’s velcro-baby for the past few months. She would only come to her when the whole family was out with the dogs. She wanted nothing more than to be a one-person dog and loved Waynelle with all her heart. Waynelle was making a painful decision to give her beautiful, beloved dog to our son.
So, Steve, Prince 1 and I talked it over. Prince 1 decided that Isabella would be a better fit and she was closer to us. Plus, we thought we could fly her out here. So, we began making plans to fly Isabella to UT. At first it looked like all would go smoothly, but then we hit a snag- over a four hour layover in Denver. Not good. Neither of our families felt comfortable with this. Waynelle mentioned she had family in WY, near Cheyenne. She said she hadn’t seen them in 10 years. She offered to drive almost 12 hours with Isabella and her son to meet us in Cheyenne on July 3rd, the same Friday we were supposed to meet in NE with a different dog. Steve and Prince 1 took off on Thursday afternoon for Cheyenne. A little after 9 PM, Prince 1 met Isabella, his new companion. Surprisingly, she started bonding with him instantly, following him, walking with him, etc. Waynelle said that seeing how she responded to him put her heart even more at ease with her decision to give her to Prince 1. She knew it was the right decision.
Waynelle also got an amazing family reunion out of the trip! She got to see an uncle who she had not seen in 12 years. He came up from CO to see her. She saw cousins and other relatives from WY, CO and other states! They spent a few blessed hours together as family for one night. The Lord has a way of doing these things!
Waynelle had this beautiful dog who she loved dearly and hoped to someday breed. She chose to give her most precious companion to our son who had lost his most precious companion. She was the feet and hands of our Lord the past two days. She could not get us off her heart and she listened to the Lord. We can never thank her enough for the sacrifice she made in giving us one of her beloved dogs which she had so many hopes of breeding. Not only that, but she gave us her collar and a cage too! But, most important of all, she gave our son a sweet companion that will love him when it seems as if no one else loves him in this harsh world. She will be there to remind him to go for a walk to get some fresh air and think/pray/breathe. She will be there to help him feed his animals, for him to reach down and pet as he studies at his computer, to remind him that she is there counting on him daily as his permanent companion. She will not leave him.
Ironically, Waynelle just told me yesterday that Isabella comes from a line of service/therapy dogs. Her father is a therapy dog too. She said Isabella is extremely intelligent and would most likely make an amazing service dog if Prince 1 decided to have her trained. Isn’t God amazing? I had given up on my prayer for a service dog after only a week or so, because Prince 1 was so set against it. I had decided to only pray for the Lord to provide a dog for our son. But, this morning, I shared with him her lineage and he actually said, “maybe later I will have her trained”. I about fell over. Only God could do all this- provide a perfect dog for our son who also comes from a line of service/therapy dogs and our son say that he might consider having her trained as a service dog! The other dogs we were to get did not have that history in their genealogy. But, Isabella does! I continue to stand here in awe of Yahweh. He never ceases to amaze me. He always provides just what we need and when we need it.
So, I saw a beautiful walk today.