Friends, meet Greta! Greta the Great. Greta the pup we've fret over and deliberated about and read oh so much about and waited for so long for. Greta the Great Pyrenees who joined us on Solstice.
For some of you, I know that Greta's arrival might raise a lingering question about a goodbye never mentioned here - one I receive emails and comments about often, and assumptions and criticism about too. I've tried to answer those questions as they come up, but I haven't been able to write about it here - it has felt too tender and raw, and the story needing to be reserved for in person and close to the heart, and those who knew her and us and the entirety of the situation. But I don't want to make this hello without a goodbye, and so the short of a very long story is this: over five years ago now, we brought home a rescue pup. We loved her, we trained her, we did all the things we'd done with our dogs in the past ... and then reached out for help when those things didn't work in helping us all jive together safely, happily. For two years, as we moved from town to country, as our family grew, she was a part of our lives....and yet we were not, at all, a match for each other. And though I think we knew it immediately - for over two years of hoping and trying to make it work - we ultimately found a new home for her. Where she could be safe and happy, and our family could be as well. It was such a hard family decision, yet one we made together and unanimously, and ultimately grew and learned a great deal from. That was nearly three years ago (just before Annabel was born), and though we have missed her and doubted ourselves and beat ourselves up a fair deal, as is only natural, I presume...we are all still so certain that it was the right decision for all involved.
(Choosing Greta, in the fall.)
We have missed, in the years that have passed, having a dog in our lives, and in the lives of our littlest ones, who barely remember living with one at all. And as we added (little) goats to the mix, and prepared for all the lambs to come, each night we heard the coyotes and the coy dogs, or saw signs of fox....we worried, and knew we needed to do something more to protect them. Though a donkey was considered (only by Ezra) and a llama too (only by me), a livestock guard dog was really the right answer for us. We waited for the right situation, fretted a little more over the decision, bringing up old anxiety about dogs. And finally, this winter, all the stars aligned and our search for just the right Great Pyrenees pup ended when we picked Greta up from a friends farm, where she had been born earlier in the season - in a family full of children, in a farm full of livestock. It's not all that different from here, really, where she came from.
I had faith, knowing where she was coming from, knowing her breed, that she would be the right pup for the job in the pasture. But oh - I worried about the rest! I didn't even know I was holding my breath about it all, or just how much worry I had, until I exhaled so fully on the night of her very first day here. Because, from the moment she walked in the door, it feels as though she's always been here. She already fits right into us, and we into her. Though I have been more cautious than any of us, I have to say - it is going remarkably well. Spending equal amounts of her time with the livestock and with the family, dear Greta is so at home. She's a puffball, lovebug, sensitive, smart, and welcome blessing on our farm and in our lives.
Welcome, Greta. We're so glad you're here!