This is a tale of two retrievers…
My brother in law and sister in law have a beautiful Golden Retriever named Koa. She’s about a year and a half older than our dog, Doc, and they are best friends.
This was not always the case. When we first brought Doc home, we were all certain that Koa would take Doc under her wing and teach him the intricacies of doggedness. Doc was about eight weeks old at their first meeting and he spent most of that meeting cowering or sleeping in the grass while Koa fetched and retrieved a tennis ball. She sniffed him a couple times and declared him too young to play with; essentially leaving him to his own devices (see above re: cowering and sleeping).
Afterward, they played together and Koa showed more interest in her tiny canine cousin. She played gently with him and a fledging friendship began.
It was always a tacit understanding between the two dogs that since Koa was bigger, she was the boss. Doc ostensibly respected this but must secretly have been counting down the days until he was bigger. I can just picture him using his tiny baby puppy claws to carve out in his crate the number of days until he would be full grown.
His patience appears to have paid off because now Doc has a solid 25lbs. on Miss Koa and he’s not afraid to use them. They’re both in the backyard now and, owing to their similarity in color, it looks like we have a tawny tornado just a-twirling away in the dog kennel.
Doc, being the dominant little rapscalion he is, has asserted himself over his very sweet cousin and uses every opportunity to remind her that he’s the boss.
It’s hard to imagine him as he once was: roly, poly, and soft like cookie dough. Who is that great big domineering dog and what has he done with my sweet puppy?