When Thanksgiving rolls around each year, I pause to think of the things I’m most thankful for. Without exception, one thing that makes my list, year-after-year, is my dog, Henry.
I am so thankful for the seemingly endless comfort, companionship, and laughter that Henry brings into my life. Yes, Henry is a bed hog and he could stand to eat an Altoid or two, but he is uncomplicated and he’s my best friend.
I love how he cherishes and snuggles all of his stuffed animals and celebrates every recovered tennis ball with complete and utter unbridled joy.
I adopted Henry when he was 10 weeks old and he has been my goofy co-pilot ever since. Between you and I: I thank Henry for being my “little bear” every night before bed and promise that I will always protect him. Thank you for all that you give me, Henry.
In honor of our furry sidekicks this Thanksgiving, I have asked a few San Francisco dog lovers to share why they are most thankful for the dogs in their lives this season.
Ace and Gingerbread
We are thankful for Ace and Gingerbread because they remind us everyday that the simple things—long walks, a bite of something new, an undiscovered trail, driving with the windows down, running through open fields, a wet lick on the cheek—are the true joys in life.
Our rescue rattiers may be small, but they embody sage wisdom, pure gratitude, and an unbridled joie de vivre that reminds us both to stop and smile, even on the busiest of days. The attached photo is our favorite photo of the family, taken by our dog walker at our local dog park.
I found Murphy at a shelter after he was discovered as a stray on the mean streets of Chicago. He was the quiet, sweet dog who walked up to me and put his head on my lap as if to say, “let’s do this.” Little did I know that the silent shelter dude would turn into a champion jumper with boundless energy once he got used to his new home.
This little guy is insanely smart, hilariously funny (and quite naughty—he has eaten at least 15 tubes of Chapstick) and he has completely transformed my life.
I adopted him during a major life transition and to say that we rescued each other is a huge understatement. This dog has taught me all about patience, compassion, unconditional love, fierce loyalty and sticking together for the long haul. So thankful for my big-eared and full-hearted 15 pound scrapper!
We knew Russ was ours when we first met him at 6 weeks old. He kissed my face and fell asleep in my lap. We brought him home a few weeks later, and he’s been our best buddy ever since.
We wanted kids, but it ended up taking much longer than we’d thought. Through it all, Russ was there. He can sense when you’re stressed or sad, and immediately rushes to snuggle and try to make things better. Now he’s the best big brother possible to our infant twins. He seems to get that they’re part of the pack, and he follows them around all day.
We’re so thankful for all the love and companionship our first baby gives us!
I brought Oliver home when he was just a baby. I grew up with dogs and I couldn’t wait to have one of my own. The best thing about my dog: he’s just so happy all the time and it’s infectious.
Oliver loves all people and dogs equally. I have never seen a dog get so excited about the doorbell ringing. He can’t wait to entertain and play with everyone he meets. Whether its my friends, UPS, or the pizza delivery guy—Oliver loves them all.
He’s like a happiness machine that never needs recharging! I am thankful for the joy Oliver brings into my life everyday.
We are thankful for our babies, Sasha and Vixen. Unfortunately, we had to put Sasha down earlier this year due to medical issues. God bless her, we miss her everyday.
Sasha was with Ester and I from the very beginning of our marriage. We loved her (and still do) so much! Vixen came along a few years later and continues to bring us happiness everyday. She wakes us up every morning with a love for life. She loves everyone and will let them know by showering them with kisses! Her energy keeps us young.
I am so incredibly thankful to have had my dog Flex in my life for eight short years. Flex was the first dog I ever had and he taught me so much. He was a big love, a bed hog, a gas machine, and he had a lazy eye which left you guessing about where he was looking most of the time. He didn’t get along with every dog, but I am thankful for getting to see him make a few friends along the way.
Flex prepared us for having our first daughter, Audrey. Flex was, after all, our first son. With Flex we endured many sleepless nights and poop (lots and lots of poop!), and just like a baby, Flex stuck a lot of things in his mouth that didn’t belong there. In a million ways, Flex showed me how to be a mom.
From the moment we brought home our daughter Audrey, Flex welcomed her into our pack. He was always by her side and incredibly sweet and patient. Audrey’s baby album is filled with pictures of them together.
We lost Flex two years ago and Audrey still talks about him to anyone who will listen. I cherish our memories and I still cry thinking about him. Thanks buddy. I sure do miss you.
Rover is founded on the belief that everyone should have the opportunity to experience the unconditional love of a dog. Rover makes it easy for dog lovers to connect and share the joy and happiness dogs bring to our lives. I asked a few of our local Bay Area dog sitters why they are thankful to be Rover sitters.
My boyfriend and I joined Rover to fill a void in our lives that only puppy love can fill. Kyle and I work really long hours during the week, so we can’t have a dog of our own right now, so we love our Rover dogs on weekends.
We have met some really awesome people and of course, some really lovable pooches! We have a favorite repeat corgi named Charlie who has some very adventurous parents. We love him as if he was our own and every time he has to go home we get a little sad.
Our experience with Rover has been great for us and we love getting our doggie fix. Kyle always laughs at me when we are out walking because I always stop to pet other peoples’ dogs! It’s nice to be the one holding the leash, even if it’s just for the weekend.
I started sitting for Rover to support my foster dog “habit.” I have been involved in formal dog rescue for the last five years: Lake Tahoe Wolf Rescue, Song Dog Rescue and NorSled Rescue. I already spent most of my free time with my dogs (two owned, one foster)—why not grow the pack once in a while? What’s one or two more when you have a big yard and a house more set up for dog guests rather than people guests?
I was hoping to make a little extra money—a little cushion every month…a little something extra for the house projects that have been lingering…a little extra for those organic beef marrow bones that give a mistreated foster dog a couple of hours of beef bliss and a lot of happiness.
I did not expect Rover to be an avenue to meet new people and increase my reserve of adorable dog stories. Each Meet & Greet brings potential friends and fellow dog lovers to my door. Each dog sit brings a new character with a distinct personality and many stories as my large dogs meet dogs of all shapes and sizes that are nothing like them. It’s good for all of us—all around.
I am thankful for being able to wake up to happy tails and expectant eyes every morning—both of my own and our furry guests that for a short time are part of our family. It’s a good life.
My first dog was a Jack Russell terrier named Evelyn. My husband and I took Evelyn everywhere and we spent all of our free time with her. She became our everything. She was our only baby and we were always meeting cool new people because of her. We explored new places that we had never been have because of Evelyn.
It was because of Evelyn being such a great doggie daughter that my husband and I decided to expand our family. Now we have a 3-year-old son, Jacob, too! I love being a Rover sitter because I get to be a doggie mommy to all kinds of dogs and give them new and fun experiences. Rover is a flexible job that I can do while I also care for my son. I think Rover has benefited the dogs as much as me!
So this Thanksgiving, when you’re thinking about everything you’re most thankful for, remember to add your furriest family members to the top of list. Savor every snuggle, laugh at every snort, and appreciate each sloppy, wet kiss.