In the Eyes of the Beholder

Beauty is something we all crave. We want beautiful spouses, beautiful children, beautiful homes, beautiful cars, and beautiful clothes. We travel to see beautiful scenery. We pray for beautiful weather, and we are attracted to beautiful friends. Everything around us promotes our desire for beauty. The movies, television, newspapers, magazines, and books that we consume revel in beauty. Ads for clothes, makeup, hairstyles, and even toothpaste tell us we need to strive for as much beauty as we can get.

Our dictionaries define beauty as prime, choice, winning, advantage, strength, benefit, and fascinating. Because of this accepted definition beautiful people are allowed many benefits in our society. They often get the best jobs, the preeminent opportunities, and the utmost recognition. Most of us would agree that this value system is both unfair and unfortunate. But we are programmed to accept it because it seems familiar and ironically justified.

This yardstick also applies to our choice of pets. At the sanctuary, because we rescue mostly senior and special needs dogs, we don’t get that many beautiful dogs, if they are judged by the normal standards of society. When we do rescue a beautiful, healthy dog our Facebook page explodes with hundreds of shares, hundreds of comments, and thousands of likes. These babies are not only adopted quickly but we generally have multiple approved applications to choose from. We would not deny these babies the attention they receive. We are thrilled when any of our babies find a wonderful forever home.

But while we are like everyone else that is instantly attracted to the beautiful, healthy, and young babies, we have also been blessed with the opportunity to see beyond the gorgeous coats, the clear eyes, and the spry attitudes. We spend most of our lives with the silver faces, the crooked mouths, the chewed up ears, the cloudy eyes, and the arthritic legs.

As we get to know each of our new residents we discover the wisdom behind those cloudy eyes, the calm acceptance in those silver faces, the tenacity in those chewed up ears, and the life experience in the roads traveled by those arthritic legs. We see unmatched devotion in the blind dog that stands between our ankles when we cook. We see the perfect patience in the arthritic dog that struggles to cross the sometimes slippery tile floor. We see the persistence in the weak dog that tries over and over to maneuver through the doggie door. We see the excitement in the deaf baby that realizes when our eyes meet that we are talking to him.

We are forever blessed by the enlightenment these old babies bring to our lives, and their courage helps us to face our daily struggles with a little less self-possessed sympathy. We enjoy the tranquility of cuddling up with a baby who doesn’t feel the need to jump up and run outside each time the wind blows a branch against the house. We delight in the commendable affirmation of an old baby that has just arrived and finds a warm reception when curling up next to others on a soft bed. Our eyes are opened to the real beauty in our world; the beauty that doesn’t judge, the beauty that doesn’t tease, the beauty that doesn’t envy.

I’ve heard it said that adopting an older dog is a waste of money because they won’t live very long or their vet bills will be too high. How much is wisdom worth? How much is calm devotion worth in your life? How much is contentment and tranquility worth in this fast paced world we all live in?

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that senior dogs are perfect for every family. What I am saying is that they can bring things into our lives that we don’t always get from our world. I’m saying that the value of a companion cannot be measured with life span. I’m saying that the love of an old baby cannot be measured in dollars and cents, and I’m saying that beauty, when it comes to our babies is very much in the eyes of the beholder.


Author: thepromisedlanddachshundsanctuary

I rescue senior and special needs Dachshunds

20 thoughts on “In the Eyes of the Beholder”

  1. I have a senior doxie 13 by all appearances she looks much younger. She has had trouble walking since she was 7 doesn’t have control of bodily functions so I clean up many messes. Her eyesight isn’t great (Wish I could afford cataract surgery) But I would never deny her anything she is sweet and kind loves everyone gives them kisses and is the sweetest dog one will ever know her beauty lies in her happy dance each morning noon or night when she is hungry or her barking to let the neighborhood where she lives or the sweet little noise she makes just before one opens the door I love the pictures of puppies and the promise of a long life but I treasure the moments I have with my senior dog thank you for caring so much about our Senior citizens. You are a treasure no one could measure thank you for caring so much


  2. Hi, I’m afraid since I contacted you last my circumstances have changed and I’m not currently in a position to adopt as I had initially wished to. Perhaps when my living situation is a bit more stable I can revisit it again.

    Thank you so much for contacting me. Donna Haarman

    On Sat, Apr 28, 2018 at 3:02 PM, The Promised Land Dachshund Sanctuary wrote:

    > thepromisedlanddachshundsanctuary posted: ” Beauty is something we all > crave. We want beautiful spouses, beautiful children, beautiful homes, > beautiful cars, and beautiful clothes. We travel to see beautiful scenery. > We pray for beautiful weather, and we are attracted to beautiful friends. > Everyt” >


  3. Sissy came to us at 9 yrs old. She was abandoned, underweight, and resigned. She let you pet her but only a little. It’s been almost 3 years. She has gone deaf but she opens up to us a little more each day. She adores my 4 yr old granddaughter. Her eyes say it all. I love you for saving me. We are so thankful she can spend her twighlight years in our living and safe home, with her pack of 2 cats and 2 other rescue dogs. She is loved mightily. She is brought nothing but love and joy to our home. Adopting a senior is never a waste it isn’t act of love and you will get it in return tenfold. Just be patient.


  4. How true are your words, Connie! No one could understand why I wouldn’ t put down my blind, deaf, 13 year old Dachshund mix with dimentia. I would answer, “Because other than that, she’s fine.” She left such deep pawprints in my heart when she passed several years ago. She was my Julie Ann (Jules). She was a stray we purposely took to the shelter to adopt legally. I never regretted her “14 1/2 years with us. She was loyal and loving! ❤️ Her last year and a half, right after I retired, was my turn to care for her 24/7! So worth the life lessons she taught me. 😌


  5. Thank you so much for pointing this out and for loving these fur babies. I was blessed to have two wonderful fur babies. They passed within four months of each other. It was heartbreaking, but I would not trade anything for the time with them.


  6. Among the things in my life
    I thank God for most,
    Is the love
    He gave me for animals.
    My heart would be emptier,
    And life would be
    Less without them.


  7. Beautifully written Connie and so true. The last few years with my 14 year old Doxie Gretchen were beautiful. Of course, we had been together since she was just a few months old, but those last years when she had so many health problems was a time spent between us that fill both our hearts with love. Your story brought back so many memories and some tears with them. Thank you. Donna


  8. No truer words have ever been spoken or written. God bless you all. You make St. Francis of Assisi proud.


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