March in Oxford, is filled with good vibes, good weather and that feeling of rebirth and renewal as spring unfolds before us and gives us a glimpse into what she has in store for us. It was this very time of year, three years ago that the Seligmans were blessed with their own birth. They met a Golden-Doodle on the Square, and Cindy Seligman was overcome with the notion that this could be just what she needed for Spring! A puppy! The Seligmans like most family had “family pets” through the years but Cindy yearned for that one on one connection, a friend of her own. It was 8 weeks later that Eli, a Golden Doodle literally came bounding into their lives.
Cindy found an expectant mama in nearby Tennessee and closely followed the progress of her pregnancy. She had a small litter of 3 puppies, and Eli was the only male. “He looked just like a stuffed animal,” Ms. Seligman recalled. “We all adore him. He has so much personality and tries to understand what we say to him.” When you talk to him, he is fully focused, attempting to gain meaning from your words and expressions. Eli is a very engaged fellow and very in tune with whomever he is with. On walks, Eli will walk ahead, stop, and wait for you to catch up with him, such a gentleman.
Eli is entertained by a variety of daily games. He is very intense when he is involved with one of his multiple daily “patrols” of the backyard. He makes certain no uninvited critters cross into his territory. Once he is certain all is clear, he loves to bound about like “Tigger the Tiger”. He scales the retaining wall of their pool and leaps down the 5 steps of the patio. It’s a bird; it’s a plane; it’s: Super Dog coming to the rescue…or coming for a treat more likely! Not only is he a dare devil fly boy, but he is obsessed with squirrels and loves to chase them. Cindy says this is a recent development and is convinced he has learned this from watching Animal Planet! Which, yes folks he actually does watch! If a cat or alligator or some other animal appears on the screen, Eli will express his feelings with a resounding bark. Watching Animal Planet, in HD overrules all other possible activities, including tug-o-war, chase, and even treats!
While Eli is as bold a boy as you will meet, he is terrified of small children. His motto is by all means necessary, stay away from the little ones. Friends of the family recently came to visit with their children and Eli jumped into the chair and hid behind Cindy. When they go to the beach, he stays as far away from kids as possible! What a silly fear for such a big guy. I bet they just find him irresistible!
Clearly Eli has many talents but his acting skills deserve an Oscar for “best performance in a drama”. Cindy was packing for a recent trip. As Eli sized up the suitcases he sat next to her holding up one paw which appeared to be injured. Concerned, Cindy lifted him into the car and immediately took him to the emergency vet. After x-rays and an examination, the vet determined Eli must have sprained his ankle. This came as no surprise since he leaps and flies through the air most of the day. Cindy determined to postpone her trip to take care of her number one man. Much to her surprise, when they arrived home, Eli jumped out of the car and charged a squirrel! Classic “Mommy, I’m sick” routine. Maybe Eli really does understand human behavior!
The Seligman family feels incredibly blessed to have Eli in their lives. Cindy is especially thankful. We at Homeward Bound are privileged to have him in our lives on a daily basis and call him part of our extended family.