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Jedd The Dog

by J. R. Lowe about a year ago in therapy · updated about a year ago
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Housemate, co-worker, counsellor, comedian and full time good boy

"No, we're not getting a dog," I said bluntly.

It wasn't because I didn't like dogs, I loved them, but as an eighteen year old, full-time student in his first rental home, getting a dog was not exactly a convenient choice. There was no way I was losing my bond money over soiled carpet and a dug-up yard. Emily, one of my three housemates, however, had other plans.

"Don't be mad," she said one day after I got home from my classes, "But I got a dog."

I would have been absolutely livid, but after just one look at Jedd's gorgeous smile I couldn't say no. And so, we welcomed him into our household. Just four students and a rather charismatic Border Collie.

Overtime though, Jedd became much more than just the household dog, and four years later, I don't think I would have made it this far without him. Why? Well, it may seem rather obvious, but there's actually a lot of evidence to show that dogs can drastically improve task performance, social interactions, and stress management.

And Jedd did just that. Letting him into my house was the best decision I ever made.

Jedd delivering some important documents which he definitely did not write himself in order to get attention

In the midst of the pandemic, the majority of my work, University classes and day to day activities were conducted at home. Meaning, my house became my office in a way.

But with this came a sense of isolation. Doing the same sort of work, in the same place, with the same people (i.e. my housemates) every single day became monotonous after a while. Work and home life had blurred together and, as a result, relaxing at home seemed to be a thing of the past. There was always more stuff to work on , things to clean, and emails to send. I think, for a while, I forgot what it was like to actually unwind.

That is until one day, Jedd pushed himself into my room. I'm still not sure how he managed to open the door, but he did. I wasn't a fan of having him in my room because he'd shed like crazy and would always leave a trail of loose hairs in his wake. But this time, I guess I was just so rundown with the 24-hour work cycle I'd thrown myself into that I didn't care.

He walked up to my desk, and took a seat on the floor beside me, staring up at me with the biggest grin on his face I'd ever seen.

"Can you help me out with this, Jedd?" I asked.

I probably sounded mad talking to a dog, but let's be honest, everyone has one-way conversations with their pets every now and then, right? I stood up from my chair, and pointed to some of the papers I had scattered on my desk.

"Do you understand these Jedd? Because I don't..."

He tilted his head curiously and then jumped up onto the chair to investigate. I laughed. He looked like he was actually trying to read the document. Ceasing the moment, I grabbed my phone and snapped a photo of him just in time before he climbed off and trotted away, back down the hallway. It was a little blurry, but a great photo nonetheless. I added a little caption to it and saved it on my phone.

The grind never stops in the office

And so began my long series of comedic photos with Jedd doing everyday things around the house. From cleaning, to working, to doing University assignments, Jedd was there to help me do it all. It actually gave me something to look forward to, and ensured I always gave myself a break to relax and have a laugh. At one stage, we even went to the effort of creating a teaser trailer for Jedd's very own cinematic masterpiece!

Everyday, we'd work together to come up with a new photo or video idea. It was what kept me going. Jedd's presence was the remedy to every hardship that came my way. That was until, we had a falling out...

Hard at work doing the house chores

Now, for the people who have never met Jedd, this may sound rather ridiculous, but when I say this dog has human-like attributes, I don't say that lightly. Sometimes I'm convinced he's a human in a dog's body.

One day, I was feeling more rundown than usual, I think because I'd received some bad grades for one of my classes, but if I'm completely honest I can't remember exactly why. Jedd came into my room, as he always did, trying to cheer me up. He'd found one of his squeaky toys that he loved and was making an absolute racket with it.

SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK.

I turned to glare at Jedd as he squeaked the toy in front of me, trying to get me to play.

"Not today, buddy. I'm not in the mood," I said coldly.

Jedd ignored me.

SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK.

I raised my voice this time so he would get the message, and then repeated myself.

"I said no, Jedd."

But Jedd ignored me again. He was persistent.

SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK. SQUEAK.

I was angry now. The noise was so irritating and I didn't have the patience for it anymore.

"That's enough, Jedd. I said no!" I shouted.

I snatched the toy from his mouth, and threw it onto the top shelf of my cupboard, out of his reach. Jedd stood there for a moment in shock as he stared at me, before he turned and trotted rather sadly back down the corridor. At last, there was silence.

I tried to get back to work, but the stress had really gotten to me this time. I couldn't concentrate at all and spent the next few hours staring at a blank document which should have been my assignment. If I'm honest, I felt a bit guilty as well for yelling at Jedd, he was only trying to cheer me up.

Eventually, I gave in and retreated to the couch for a quick powernap. This next part is unbelievable, I still can't really believe it happened myself, but I swear it genuinely did. Just as I was beginning to drift off, I was jolted awake by a loud "BARK" just centimetres from my face. My eyes flashed open, and right in front of me, was Jedd's smug smile. I was still in complete shock, when Jedd turned and trotted away back down the corridor.

When I say that dog is petty, I mean he's PETTY. He knew exactly what he was doing when he barked me awake. I suppose that was his revenge for yelling at him and taking away his toy. Well played, Jedd.

Things were a bit ruff (sorry, I had to do it) between us for the next few days, but eventually I made things up to him by bringing out the squeaky toy and sneaking him a few treats here and there. Soon after, he went back to his usual happy self, and was there to help support me in my everyday work life.

Mess up his floors and he'll mess up your life

Jedd has always been, and always will be, one of my dearest friends. He's helped me through so much, and I don't think I would have made it this far without him. He's gotten me through my Bachelor's, my Master's, my research assistant work, and the worst parts of a pandemic. He's a housemate, co-worker, counsellor, comedian and full time good boy (except perhaps when he's being petty).

Thank you, Jedd.

therapy

About the author

J. R. Lowe

I confess, I don't exactly have a specific topic or writing style, or an organised train of thought for that matter. On the plus side, that means there's probably something here everyone ;)

Twitter: https://twitter.com/J0SHwrites

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