They say home is where the heart is. A matter of semantics, perhaps, but I would say home is where the dogs are.

The commute in the morning away from home is more than about going to the place that helps us keep a roof over our heads and food in our bellies. It’s about spending our days doing that which we are passionate about and in so doing make a difference for others. So while work can be hard and hectic, it is fulfilling and even fun.

The commute in the early evening to home is also met with things that are hard, hectic, fulfilling and fun. It’s hard because of the chores and upkeep of a home. And it’s hard sometimes caring for our animal companions when they have special needs. But far outweighing the hard are the fulfilling and fun. It is fulfilling knowing that we play an important role in the safety and happiness we know our rescued dogs, Jasmine, Moses, and Sam feel. To know that the things we do for them have brought them quality of life, comfort and happiness pales in comparison to knowing what they bring to us. There is nothing like the love of a dog. And there is nothing like the fun of loving a dog.

Dogs are fun. They take pleasure in barking at the farm equipment that goes up our road as though the hundredth time is the first. They greet the morning with the same enthusiasm – Mosey usually howling and coaxing the rest of us to sing along with him. They love to rifle through their basket of toys, tossing out all the well-preserved chew bones, the miraculously still in tact stuffed animals and find just the right thing, the left leg of the giraffe from last Christmas or the piece of some kind of fabric — the remnant of something we hope we bought them sometime ago. “Is that…?” “Do you think that could be…?” whatever the thing is, the dogs frolic as though it brings them joy.

But what brings them greater joy is riding in the car. Dogs and cars go together like the fall and campfires, marshmallows and cocoa and wine and cheese. How could you possibly enjoy one without the other.

Our dogs love a good ride in the car whether to the park, the veterinarian’s office, to the ocean or to nowhere really in particular. I’m certain that because of all of the wonderful car rides Moses, Sam and Jasmine have had with Gary and me that they believe that each day when we head off on our commute to work we are really going somewhere to sniff the delicious scents of trees and evidence of those who have visited them. Or perhaps we somehow made it to the ocean and back in one day and spent the time in between chasing waves and barking at the sea gulls.

They may not really know where we go, but they know that the car gets us there. And they may not be really particular about what the car looks like, but they know that it is most important that the back seats be folded down and that blankets, pillows and toys be strategically placed for comfort and fun. They appreciate cars so much I think they would completely understand why the two are coming together again for the Second Annual Pickaway Dog Shelter (Partners for Paws) Car Show and Cruise in this Saturday September 22 at AmVets on Tarlton Road in Circleville. The event raises funds for the Pickaway County Wright Poling Dog Shelter so that more dogs can find their forever homes from whence they can take those treasured car trips to the parks and to the ocean and really anywhere else. For more information about Saturday’s event, contact Sherri Rarey at 740-412-6228 or sharrirarey01@gmail.com.

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