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Constant Source of Amusement

Jackson is my 60 pound German Shepherd puppy who makes me laugh at least once a day. Most times I’m laughing at him and the crazy things he gets into but there are also quite a few times I’m laughing at myself and the way we are playing together. Since Multiple Sclerosis has affected my legs and my balance, I sometimes fall over when I throw balls for Jackson. I somehow don’t mind though; I just pick myself up and throw the ball again. In all of my years with MS, I never imagined that I would be playing outside with a puppy whether it’s raining, snowing or the sun is shining. I enjoy seeing him happy and by watching him run around after the balls I throw for him, it makes me happy too.

Jackson is a constant source of amusement for me even when he is knocking me over. Since he is 9 months old and weighs 60 pounds, he’s just a huge puppy who doesn’t know his own strength. We finally passed Obedience 1 class and he loves to learn new things and please us; however, he still has his crazy moments. For instance, no matter how big he gets, he still enjoys sitting on my lap and being super close to me. He has no idea that I have MS and that I have limitations. Sometimes when I’m on the floor with him and he gets too close, I’ll put my arm out and say, “Personal space”. I don’t think he quite understands what I’m saying but the look on his face, trying to process what I said, makes me laugh. In addition, when we play outside with 2 balls at once, sometimes he will grab one ball in his mouth and cover the other ball with his paw so I can’t throw it. I swear sometimes he’s laughing at me while I’m trying to figure out how to outsmart him and get one of the balls back. Unlike my friends and family who don’t expect me to run around outside, Jackson just looks at me with a big smile on his face and waits for me to throw another ball. I can’t help but love this dog who unconditionally loves me every day. Whether I reprimand him, laugh at him, call him silly names or blow in his face, he’s always happy and comes back for more.

I have been told that it takes German Shepherds a good year and a half to two years to reach their adult weight and maturity level. Since Jackson in 9 months old, I am halfway there. I am hoping and praying that he will be my service dog some day and that instead of knocking me over and bruising me, he’ll help me walk and stay upright. Although Jackson has been the cause of me falling down on more than one occasion, I wouldn’t change a thing. His antics keep me laughing and smiling every day.

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