Ten years ago I met Kenny. I was a little nervous at the prospect of having another mouth to feed since I was barely able to take care of myself, but I also felt like I needed something life-changing. And quick.
My friend Valerie drove me down to Kent to pick him up, where he was staying with a nice couple who rescued cairn terriers. He was a pretty aloof and didn’t seem to care one way or the other when I put a collar on him and walked him out to the car.
When someone first found him, he was about eleven pounds. The couple that took him in got him up to fourteen pounds. A full-grown cairn should be about twenty. Nobody knew how old he was, but he was certainly no puppy. He was house trained and knew how to sit, so, who knows?
On our first day together, I filled his new bowl with chow and he wolfed it down immediately and a couple hours later he threw it up. When I started to clean it up he growled and came at me, like I was taking his food.
I filled his bowl again hoping that if I kept a full bowl of food out at all times he would realize that he didn’t have to worry about food anymore. He got up to twenty pounds in a couple months and lost all of his food insecurities. Now, if you offer him a treat, he may or may not even eat it.
Turns out he’s a great little guy. I had him for ten years but when I took on three jobs last April, it wouldn’t have been fair to Kenny to keep him. My sister came out to Seattle for a conference about mental health (Suzi rocks) and offered to bring Kenny back with her to bring to our parents.
I dropped Suzi and Kenny off at her downtown hotel on her last day here. She flew him back to Connecticut and he wasn’t uptight at all. I kind of knew that he wouldn’t have any problem, he’d already hung out with my parents and I was sure that he would attach himself to them pretty much immediately.
I named him Kenny for my dad and his father and his father and on and on. It’s our middle name- James Kenneth Craig. My Mom wanted to name me Damien but they agreed to name me James Kenneth Craig Jr on the condition that my nickname would be Jay, my Mom’s second choice.
If I had ever had a son, I would have probably named him Kenneth. It’s a noble name. It’s the name of the king that brought the Scots and the Picts together. And to ken means to know.
Kenny took to his new home immediately. The thought of Kenny following my Dad, Ken, around like a shadow always makes me smile. As does the thought of my Mom taking him out for a grooming and giving him a blueberry facial. They even take him out for ice cream!
People always ask me if I miss him, and I don’t. Not even a little. We had our time together but I honestly don't miss him. I sure am looking forward to see him in his new home, though.