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The Original Treowe Danes

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                                              Just A Dog
  From time to time, people tell me "lighten up, it's just a dog," or "that's a lot of money for just a dog."
They don't understand the distance traveled, the time spent or the costs involved for "just a dog."
Some of my proudest moments have come about with"just a dog."
Many hours have passed and my only companion was "just a dog"but I did not once feel slighted.
Some of my saddest moments have been brought on by "just a dog"
and in those days of darkness, the gentle touch of "just a dog"gave me comfort and reason to overcome the day.
If you, too, think it's "just a dog," then you will probably understand phrases like "just a friend," "just a sunrise," or "just a promise."
"Just a dog" brings into my life the very essence of friendship, trust and pure unbridled joy!
"Just a dog" brings out the compassion and patience that make me a better person.
Because of "just a dog" I will rise early, take long walks and look longingly to the future.
So for me and folks like me, it's not "just a dog," but an embodiment of all the hopes and dreams of the future, 
the fond memories of the past, and the pure joy of the moment.
"Just a dog" brings out what's good in me and diverts my thoughts away from myself and the worries of the day.
I hope that someday they can understand that it's not "just a dog"
but the thing that gives me humanity and keeps me from being "just a man."
So the next time you hear the phrase "just a dog," just smile because they "just don't understand."

                            ------Richard Bilby