You gotta love someone who has decided to love you with every squirming inch of her tiny frame.
This is Stella. She is a griffon, with all the absurd features that griffons possess: liquid, bulgy eyes, floppy ears, a flat monkey nose, a jutting jaw, a small sturdy body and four matchstick legs. In Stella’s case the legs have become stiff with age and she walks as though she were a dog-doll and some invisible child is “walking” her in a sort of rolling gait. On occasion, when excited, Stella breaks into a run – comical, but also alarming, because she is really old.
Soon after we met Stella decided to love me. Since then she has been faithful, even when I was sharing my house with a couple of cats who glared at her. She is the smallest and bravest dog in the neighbourhood, and has more than once stood squarely at the front of her pack and ticked off the big sook of a labrador from next door. He wouldn’t have hurt her but she didn’t know that, and she gave him an earful.
Now, when she sees me, her ears smooth down and her silly little face breaks into a smile – yes, it does so. She breaks into a rickety trot and follows me home – her people know where to find her. We spend a little time together on the deck or ambling around exploring my garden before we stagger back to her place nearby – two old girls who understand each other.