Do you remember,
when we met?
That's the day,
I knew were my pet."
I think of that song every time I remember the day I met Juno.
Four years ago, I showed up at a pet adoption location at the suggestion of a friend who fostered Siberians. I wasn't looking for a Sibe. In fact, if I knew even 1/10th of the work and heartache a Sibe would give me, it still wouldn't have mattered. Because when Juno sat up on her hind legs and waved her paws in the air at me (her first "sit pretty"), I fell head over heels in love. I knew immediately she was mine.
Before finding Juno, I was looking for a dog to specifically to handle Loki's need for rough play. I didn't want a full GSD for fear of dealing with hip dysplasia. The universe laughed and said "Here is Juno. She will teach you." And teach us she's done. She's taught Loki many lessons in gentle play and has taught me that health challenges are nothing to feel weighed down by. We've both grown stronger together facing our health challenges.
I think I've finally risen to provide her what she needs. Each day she shows me that despite her severe hip dysplasia, that she can handle more. She now covers up to 5-mile runs (trotting pace) by bike or on foot with me, 4 times per week. She knows just what she needs and trusts me to help her.
And while Juno shows me every day she is a Sibe first, she also dispels many myths of Sibes. Like all Sibes, she's still a very independent thinker, but in safe locations, she's earned her off-leash freedom and laughs at the idea of Siberians disliking the water.
In fact, as long as I'm near any body of water, it's pretty easy to keep tabs on her. She's always in the water!
Juno's is even known to be an excellent trainer herself. She's taught Mr. Wild Dingo many lessons in patience and in how to win a Siberian's affection. And though the reader may think it's food, it's taken us as long as 4 years to truly understand that it's true affection and respect for her position with the pack, peppered with a bit of favoritism over Loki.
It's easy to see why the universe sent Juno to us. She is the ultimate Zen master and personal guru. And she is the happiest dog I know.
All three of us love you, Juno. Happy 4 year Anniversary and 5th Birthday!