|This article from Yahoo! News came across my newsfeed:|
A loyal dog whose owner died late last year has apparently been showing up for Mass every day for the last two months at the church where the funeral was held.
Tommy, a stray who was adopted by Lochi, has been showing up "when the bell rings out to mark the beginning of services" ever since.
"He's there every time I celebrate mass and is very well behaved," Father Donato Panna told the paper. "He doesn't make a sound."
None of the other parishioners has complained, Panna said, and villagers give the dog food and water and allow him to sleep nearby.
"I've not heard one bark from him in all the time he has been coming in," Panna added. "He waits patiently by the side of the altar and just sits there quietly. I didn't have the heart to throw him out—I've just recently lost my own dog, so I leave him there until Mass finishes and then I let him out."
Examples of this type of extreme canine loyalty are incredibly common.
In 2011, a fallen Navy SEAL's Labrador retriever lay down next to his owner's casket at a funeral service in Rockford, Iowa, refusing to leave.
The heart-wrenching photo of the scene, taken by the SEAL's cousin and posted to Facebook, soon went viral.
And on Tuesday, a 60-year-old man's dog watched and waited for 30 minutes as the Fire Department rescued his owner after he fell through thin ice into the freezing waters of the Colorado River:
Nearby hunters witnessed the accident and called 911. But while they waited for help, the man's dog refused to leave the scene. Like a worried relative in the waiting room, the dog paced back and forth, trying to reach the man, who repeatedly waved the dog off, fearing for its safety.
"This is simply who dogs are," Dr. Karen Overall, an Animal Behavior expert said, "We have had a close, cognitive, emotional and working relationship with dogs for tens of thousands of years, and we have both been changed by that history. Dogs are heroic to us because they live up to that relationship."
I love my animals more than anything else in the world. My dog Jasper (the blond) died on Christmas Eve 2011 of Cancer and I still miss him daily. My remaining dog, Rory (and is no longer a puppy), is always a bright spot in my day. Whenever I have a terrible day at work, I know that when I get home she will be BEYOND excited to see me. That's a nice feeling.