McKee.  She’s our sweet tempered 11 year old Dobie.  She’s actually the one who started the word “runningamuck” in our household many years ago.  She was but a young pup, brand new in our home and the center of Hubby’s and my first disagreement.  We had made a bed for her in the shower since she wasn’t housetrained yet and it had a door to keep her contained.  Well, she didn’t care for it too much, mostly because she didn’t want to be separated from us.  One evening she took to pawing at the shower door, incessantly.  Hubby, being the super patient man that he is, quickly grew tired of her noise and commented that he was going to duc tape her paws together (now hold on, hold on.  PETA members take a deep breath and keep reading before you call the hotline to report us.  Hubby would NEVER have actually done this!).  And me, being the calm, steady, non-emotional partner that I am, started to tear up and blubber on and on about how she “was just a baaaby!”  Not quite the reaction Hubby needed and he spun on his heel and announced,”Well, let’s just let her runamuck all over the house then!”  I’m not sure what calmed our disagreement down.  But it probably had to do with sweet puppy kisses, us realizing how hilarious the moment and Hubby’s new word was, followed by a few puppy snores echoing from the shower and Hubby and I finding a way to make up in our once again, quiet home.  But the word “runningamuck” has become a staple in our household dialect ever since. 

I have so many stories about McKee.  How, as a young dog, she once put up with a room full of nephews and nieces screaming and playing all around and one of them sitting on top of her as she lay there while another one tried to roll them up like a burrito in her blanket.  She didn’t bat an eyelash.  She just took it all in stride.  Or how she used to love chasing the light from a flashlight all around the room (that provided Hubby with hours of entertainment over the years let me tell you).  One time a very dear friend of ours stuck a smeared Peep (the marshmallow chick kind, not the homie kind) to the top of her snout and then we watched her proceed to tear apart the room, frantically trying to find the source of the delightful smell of something edible (although that could be debated) that she was literally drooling over.  I think our dear friend about peed her pants she laughed so hard.  McKee did eventually get it when we took pity on her peeled it off her nose for her.  McKee continues, to this day, to completely freak out when this friend comes over.  She remembers… but obviously not the torment.  No, she remembers all the people food this friend has snuck her over the years and the doggie toys she has dropped off for her.  She holds a special place in McKee’s very big doggie heart. 

McKee also considers herself to be the best emergency medic in the house.  Every time one of the kiddos gets hurt outside (and hello, I have three boys so it happens often), she’s the first on scene.  Delivering her own special kind of medicine.  It’s called, “Lick-the-tears-til-they-stop-icine”.  Yup.  She’ll even wiggle her way between me (holding the band aids, neosporin and ice-pack) and whoever is hurt just so she can be sure to get an appropriate amount of her medicine administered to insure the quickest recovery. 

When each of my children have learned how to talk, her name has always been one of the first they’ve said.  And she’s the first one they look for when they go outside. 

She’s always had a lot of energy, even now.  Yet she instinctively knows to more careful around kids.  

She’s our protector.  Always on guard against the ever invading possums and rats in our neighborhood.  And she sweetly lays the ones that get to close by the door for us to see when we get up in the morning.

She’s our Confidant. Ready to listen to any whispered secret, big or small.  Or to just lay in your lap as you release the cares of the day by mindlessly rubbing her soft ears. (with the kids she lays across them rather than in a lap.  It’s very funny to watch)

It’s great to watch the bond between my children and McKee grow as the years go by.  It makes me remember my own bond with our family dog when I was a child.  And I know that McKee will always hold a special spot in their memories. 

And I pray that there will be plenty more days of memory-making with McKee still to come.