I just thought to celebrate my canine today. My very first canine. I can’t wait to have my next one (which I won’t have till I have my own home and can ensure that I will never have to leave him to anyone to look after).

I came home from boarding school one holiday and daddy had this mischievous twinkle in his small eyes I couldn’t place. Did we buy a new car? Did they adopt a baby? Was Momma having a baby? I couldn’t place it. And he wouldn’t say anything beyond; “I have a surprise for you”.

That surprise turned out to be Blesso, our first German shepherd. He was about three weeks old, and was such a beauty!

Blesso (short form for Blessing – that’s what he was to us) became a member of the family immediately. I remember my mom making breakfast for my dad in one part of the kitchen, and my dad mashing boiled eggs and pouring milk for Blesso’s breakfast. As I type I can see the picture of both of them ‘working hard’ like it was yesterday.

Blesso was spoiled; truly spoiled. As a baby, if you set his food down and walked away, he would go have a look at the meal, look at you, and walk away. But if you pulled a chair and sat by the food, he’d come and eat. Even better if you fed him, he’d be seconds from purring! Blesso was spoiled, our truly spoiled baby.

I remember when he sprained his foot. Funny story. As a baby Blesso hated night time and going into his kennel, he’d do anything for a few more minutes of play every night. One night when we put him in, I don’t even remember how he was roughing the place up (angry that he was in his mansion) and next thing we heard something between a howl and a shout!

We all came out, and I promise you Blesso had tears coming out his eyes! He’d hurt one of his hind legs. Took him to the vet the next day, and it was bandaged a bit. Blesso milked it to death!! Ahh! He’d be walking normally o, once he saw one of us he’d start limping and whimpering. Just so you’d carry him. Spoiled, spoiled, spoiled!

But we loved him. Still do.

We had so many variations to his name, like Sir B, Blesso, at some point I started calling him ‘Jibi’, much to my brother’s annoyance (Lord knows how I thought that up)! Whatever I called him though, Blesso knew my voice, and that was enough.

After Blesso turned two, my fondest memories of returning from boarding school or from a trip would be letting him out of his kennel for my ‘inspection’.

Soon as he heard my voice, he’d bark nonstop till I appeared in front of his mansion. When I let him out, he’d smell my feet, lick it (perhaps tasting for consistency, lol), and then, satisfied it was me, he’d stand on his hind feet and use his fore to thump my chest. Boom!

For me, that was his way of saying, “welcome back boo! Where have you been?” And somehow, I started looking forward to this little ritual.

I came home once and not only was ‘home’ now in a different state of Nigeria (my parents had been transferred), but Blesso and his mansion were gone. Our lodgings didn’t have provision for animals and so my folks had given him out. Broke my heart so bad, I felt like someone died. For me, Blesso was ‘home’.

I’ve had two more canines since Blesso (Izzie and Waffles) but like the throes of passion only novelty induce, Blesso will always be in my heart.

P:S – I was inspired to search myself and write about Blesso after Priscilla from dogvacay.com got in touch to ask if I would write on the theme ‘home away from home’. Bringing up all the memories? Totally worth it!

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Comments
  1. Blesso sounded like a dog I would love or anyone for that matter.

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    • Welcome to my blog Maria!

      I absolutely loved Blesso, absolutely loved him! I remember not liking my folks very much when I found out they’d given him away (even though they really had to).

      That’s why I’m going to wait till I’m settled in such a way that I won’t ever have to give up any canine ever again…

      *a tad emotional*

      Like

  2. Olga Blark says:

    Aaaw, reminds me of my cute adopted pup, Breeze Ikenna, someone got him for his girlfriend, she didn’t want him and I gladly took him in and loved him, never thought I could bond with an animal. But it felt like he was my baby. Then boyfriend came back from a long trip, and came to claim him back. I felt the way mums feel when the real parents of a child they adopted comes back into the picture, I actually cried. Ok enough now, written a whole epistle. Lol.

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    • No way!!! I can totally relate to that!

      When I heard my dog Izzie passed on (December 2009), I was in a meeting at the BBC in Abuja where I worked as assistant producer. I got a text (how cruel of his handlers to notify me by text), and I just crumbled.

      My colleagues (and our bosses) thought I’d lost a family member, didn’t believe I was crying like that over a dog. It took me about a year before I could speak to the family in whose hands Izzie passed, and we don’t even talk as much as before!

      Dogs have a way of just taking over your life and loving you unconditionally, it’s incredible. I think God is super awesome, super super awesome, just for creating dogs.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

  3. Berry says:

    Imagine! All for a dog???? Mba o! I/we’ve never had a dog. My parents hate it. My siblings do. As a matter of fact, we don’t even visit people who own dogs. I can never stop wondering how you guys bond with animals. Ahhh!!!!

    I remember one day that I was eating out with my friend who doubles as my older sister too (Chinelo Obidoa) and she got an sms from her dad telling her that her dog had died. Babe immediately started crying o. And we were in an eatery! Haba! She couldn’t even talk when I asked what the problem was. I had to take her phone to read the sms she just got. Only God knows how I hisssssssssed and continued eating. It was after the dog even died that I started following her home (Nsukka).

    I also have this friend who lives in the States. Each time she’s coming back to Nigeria, she takes her dog to a hotel or something like that (in the States there) where she pays for the number of days she wants the dog there and taken care of (till she’s back).

    Mtcheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeew!!!!

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    • Lmao! Berry o! You didn’t even play on your ‘hating on dogs’ at all. SMH. Dogs are the best pets ever! I recognize that sometimes it’s really ‘to each their own’ but I’m so advocating for dogs!

      About dog hotels, this post was actually inspired by Priscilla who works for an organization that provide something similar to that, kind of a babysitting, vacation type service for our canines! I can’t wait to own my next one!

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  4. Nonye says:

    Now, for a brief moment I actually thought you were going to talk about your tooth! Lol
    FGS, I don’t like dogs o, but the way you have told this story makes me want to peep through a door, look at Blesso and smile at Blesso- only Blesso for now o(I don’t trust myself yet to carry a dog without startling him and myself in the process). I just want to hail him O’Blesso!
    God bless your heart.

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    • @ Nonye, ha ha ha!! They are called canines too aren’t they? Lol! The only stories I have about my teeth recently haven’t been too pleasant (sad face) so I’ll just leave them alone (not look for their trouble) by not writing about them.

      Blesso was a rock star dog – loved kids, was jealous of anything else with four legs (lol), I remember him like it was yesterday!

      Bless yours too.

      Like

  5. awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww

    This was so cute..I can’t even stop awwing…. I can just imagine how bonded you were to him and they just sold him out?!!!! HAAA, if it’s me, I will cry oo. Maka y naw? at least they shd have improvised or something 😦

    SO not fair!

    Dogs just have a way of bonding with humans and I don’t know why. I guess that’s why some ppl prefer them to cats. Probably becos they hv that faithful thing in them and they are sensitive. They know when you’re happy and when you’re not while some are just attention seekers.

    I remember I saw a hairy dog of a colleague in school. It was so shy and would go and sit in a corner and would even let you carry it.(can’t remember if it was a she or he) but she was so domestic.

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    • Hello Glowing Scenes, I did bond with my baby. They didn’t sell him o (would have been blood money, lol), but that doesn’t take away how sad I felt. 😦

      Dogs are a literal example of garbage in, garbage out. Whatever you teach them or train them in, they give back to you. The only thing they don’t have to be taught is love and loyalty, and they come packed with loads of those.

      Thank you for stopping by!

      Like

  6. mcieonnanna says:

    Very nice. Though am not a dog fan

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  7. Maggielola says:

    Lucky you! You can have puppies, blesso, and members of his clan. Now, though I love petting pets, owning them is another. Blame my VERY Nigerian upbringing spiced with lots of Yoruba movies about beast morphing. *Blood of Jesus!*

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    • Hello Maggie, where have you been?

      Ha ha ha at the Nigerian upbringing! I totally can relate to that, but somehow my folks didn’t buy into that, and boy am I happy they didn’t/don’t!

      Lol @ Blood of Jesus… lol!

      Hugs!

      Like

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