When I was a little girl, my family's pet dogs lived outside and got little care. It wasn't an option for them to live in the house with us. Our long driveway made a perfect race track for the milk hauler, so it wasn't a matter of "if" our pet would get run over, it was a matter of "when" it would get run over.
Thinking back to those days, it's obvious that we weren't very kind to our most loyal comrades. Now, the fuzzy one lives here with us. She is one of us. Her feelings are our responsibility. We buy special dietary food that comes at a high price, simply because her breed tends to suffer from allergies. She is groomed on a regular basis, and her temperment is such that her veterinarian soundly sedates her during the grooming. The short and sweet of it is that the two of us do nothing that doesn't involve her welfare first.
Off and on we hear of a story where a dog saves a life or brokenheartedly lies beside his deceased master. It almost breaks a person's heart to watch the extent of their loving loyalty. One thing we can always be sure of.....if our last friend on earth turns their back on us, our fuzzy ones will still love us and loyally protect us. We never have to worry.
Great Spirit, please hold our canine companions in the palm of Your Hand, and please help us humans keep their teeth nice and clean. Amen