10" x 8"
oil on canvas
Bear is the dog I waited 40 years for. I wanted a dog as long as I can remember – from childhood on. Growing up, we always had cats but no dog. Of course, I couldn’t have a dog in college or grad school or even as a single working professional living in an apartment complex.
At age 28, I married a non-dog person. He had never grown up around animals and had never been around a really great dog. I knew that he had the potential to become a dog lover if given the chance. A friend of ours had a wonderful golden retriever, and once or twice a year we would travel to Montana to stay with her and photograph in the surrounding area. Sure enough, over the years Mike ended up falling in love with Bridger, and so I started dropping hints about getting a golden of our own. Even after I had him convinced, we ended up waiting until we built our dream house on several acres just outside of town. We decided a golden retriever would be much happier if he had lots of room to run and play.
Bear came into our lives almost 10 years ago. He was the blondest and fattest puppy in his litter, and we both knew he was the one. He has given us more joy over the past 10 years than we could’ve ever imagined! He is smart, kind, playful, loyal, and goofy all rolled into one! And although his face is now white, he continues to be just as playful as he was years ago. Bear always greets us with a stuffed toy in his mouth, so in that sense he is a true retriever. However, he has never been into playing fetch. Instead, he likes to run around with the ball in the mouth and play keep-away from his humans.
Clair’s painting is based on a photo of Bear I took when he was less than a year old.