You would never know looking at this sweet docile face that at the age of 3 months I would have gladly returned him to the breeder. He had by that time already earned the nickname "Devil Dog". He was constantly jumping on us and biting us, as well as getting into everything, including any dirt filled puddle he could find in the backyard.
I blame all his naughtiness on the fact that he was an only dog. He never had any siblings to bite him back or take him down a peg or two in the pecking order. My theory on this was proven when we added our second Golden Retriever, Scout, when Riley was 10 months old. A big part of the reason we added Scout was so that Riley would have a playmate/bitemate. Scout quickly put Riley in his place and that was the end of "Devil Dog".
I took this photo of Riley on a recent Sunday morning. We were all rushing around getting ready for church, yet there he lay, peacefully at the end of my daughter's bed. The sunlight coming through the window illuminated him so perfectly that I had to quick grab my camera and get a few shots of him.
At 11-1/2 he is starting to slow down a little. He needs a boost up onto the bed now, but he still loves daily walks and he can hear the crinkle of a cheese package from anywhere in the house. I will know he is truly getting old when he doesn't come running for a piece of cheese anymore.
**I kind of fell off the Photo - Heart Connection wagon the second half of 2013, but I have committed to resuming for all of 2014. Thanks to Kat Sloma for hosting this wonderful opportunity to share a favorite photo from the past month and share the story behind it as well.