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Rated: · Other · Adult · #1577101
A story of finding love
Wing Man

It was Saturday morning and my German Sheppard, Gilbert, was overdue for a good run. He was a well behaved dog, who had been neglected for the last couple of weeks. I had been putting a lot of hours in at the office and the only attention he was getting was a short walk around the block in the evenings. Gil loved to go to Crestview Lake and play with the other dogs in the special dog park there. I would take Gil to the park at least twice a month to run off some of his energy. He was a frisky dog, but, because of the obedience training that we had gone through he was the most well behaved and best trained dog I have ever owned. Gil was a good companion and an excellent watch dog.
I got Gil when he was a pup. It was love at first sight. After several chewed up shoes, gnawed belts and several little accidents, Gil and I were having problems. My patience was wearing thin, but, the poor pup was just playing. It was at that point, I decided, to enroll him in obedience school. I was amazed at how well Gil took to the training. It was like he wanted to behave, but, he didn’t know how. The instructor was great. He explained that it was going to take a real commitment, on my part, for the training to stick with Gil. There was something special about this pup that made me want to take the time to train him. The obedience school made us best friends. Gil needed my attention, but, he knew when to try to get that attention and when to leave me alone. I had to learn those same traits in him.
As he grew, we become closer friends. He was a strong dog that now weighed sixty pounds and could knock me down, pretty easily, when we were playing. He was as gentle as a kitten though. I would take him over to play with my nieces and nephews often. They liked Gil as much as he liked them. Gil became a real family member. The kids could sit on him, pull his tail or tease him and if he thought they were being threatened, he was the first to be there to protect them. Gil would never eat anything without my permission. My nephew, Timmy, like to slip him food from the dinner table. Gil would look at the food and then look at me for permission, if I nodded approval he would gently take the food from Timmy’s hand, if I shook my head no, he would simply turn around and leave the room. He would never consider jumping up on the table or the counter and just take food that was left out.
Like I said, Gil’s favorite place to play was the dog park at Crestview Lake. He liked to wrestle with the other dogs. He knew how rough he could be with the other dogs. If he was playing with a poodle he could be gentle or as rough as a Lab wanted to get with him. After a good romp in the dog park, I would take him for several laps on the walking trail that meandered around the lake. One of Gil’s only indiscretions was that he liked to chase the ducks and geese that were walking around the water. He would never catch them, just chase them. The two swans that called the lake home, gave him fits. They wouldn’t come out of the water and he knew he wasn’t allowed in the water. He would run back and forth along the shore, barking at the swans, daring them to come out of the water. They would glide gracefully by, at a safe distance, with their heads held high as if looking down their nose at Gil. The only problem with the park was I always had to treat Gil for fleas after every visit.
I tried to keep Gil on a good diet. I wanted him to stay fit. One of his only vices was chocolate ice cream, so, after a good romp at the park I would take him to the Dairy Queen for a large bowl of his favorite treat. He knew he wasn’t allowed inside the store so he patiently waited for me outside, never bothering the other customers.
Another of Gil’s favorite playgrounds was the beach. He loved to chase the birds, careful to never catch them. I often thought if he were human, he would have been a great wing man for me in my younger days. Always out chasing women for the sake of the hunt, but, never for the catch. Gil would run up and down the beach scaring the gulls and chasing the pelicans and the occasional Hermit grab. He would get furious when they would bury themselves in the sand. He would start digging like a steam shovel digging for coal. Once, after one of his excavating adventures he came back to me with something in his mouth. He looked up at me, as if, to ask permission to eat it. I said “What do you have there, boy?” I took it out or his mouth, it was a clam. I didn’t even know there were clams in this area. Leave it up to Gil to find something like that. I told him that he couldn’t eat it and I threw it back in the water. Gil whined a little, but, was soon off chasing the sea gulls again.
Gil would take on the biggest intruder, warn the biggest dog not to bother his owner and guard me with his life, but, poor Gil did have a fear. He was deathly afraid of storms. I could always tell when a bad storm was coming. Gil would get real antsy and never get farther than two feet away from me when the black clouds rolled in. If it started to thunder Gil had to be touching me, until it stopped. Hurricane season was really bad for him. He would become physically ill when a hurricane was approaching. He would throw up and shake violently. To calm him, I had to talk to him constantly during a storm.
Gil was a devoted friend, never questioning my moods, never disobeying my commands, never arguing with me, always being my constant protector. Over the first two years that I owned him, we had become a real team. He was always ready to jump in my truck to accompany me wherever I went. He was always eager to please me.
I got up late on this particular Saturday. Gil wanted to go out to play. He was pacing, back and forth, from me to the door. I told him that I had to do something later and couldn’t take him to the park, so, we would have to stay close to home. I grabbed a Frisbee and said let’s go. We were tossing the Frisbee in the common area of the apartment complex when a good looking woman came by walking a big Chocolate Lab. Gil dropped the Frisbee and headed for the Lab. I called him back, but, it was obvious that he wasn’t coming back until he checked out the Lab. I walked over and took hold of his collar, in a feigned attempt at holding him back, until I could assure her that he wouldn’t hurt her or her dog. She said “It’s alright, Grace needs a new playmate.” We introduced ourselves, as she proceeded to tell me that she just moved in and didn’t know that many people yet. I picked up on the mutual interest right away. Grace took off with Gil hot on her trail. Grace’s owner’s name was Cindy and I was thinking that Cindy was as hot as Gil thought Grace was. Was a romance in bloom for me and Gil? Cindy and I sat down on a nearby bench, while Gil chased after Grace, and got to know each other better. After Cindy had accepted my invitation to go on a date, Gil and I left. As Gil and I were walking back home, I told him to be careful, he was good at the chase but how would he feel about catching her or was that me I was talking to. Only time would tell.
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