Last night, I was watching the Olympics when Dudley came and sat in front of me and started whining, which is his usual way of communicating that he wants something. He'd just been out, he'd eaten, and there was water in his bowl, so, for a moment, I couldn't figure out what he needed.
"What is it, boy?" I asked him. I reached my hands out to him, and he put his long face in my hands, which is his habit. He whimpered. "I don't know what you need," I said to him.
He rubbed against me, then sat again, and tilted his face toward the space beside me on the sofa, which was covered in pillows. He stood again and snorted at them impatiently.
Zelda has taught Dudley, by example and generation of envy, how to cuddle. It's still new to me, his desire to be so close. I realized he wanted me to move the pillows so he could hop up and snuggle in beside me.
I shifted the pillows onto the loveseat and patted the space where they'd been. "Up," I said. He leaped up, in his typically graceful way, and turned in a circle before setting in along my side, his chin on my knee. He gave a heaving sigh of contentment, and I stroked his ears.
I never imagined the dog who, when he first came to us, peed with fright every time I got near him would someday beg to be near me. He is so not the dog that came off that horrible track anymore, and it makes my heart full.