“Have you seen Spirit Dog?” Bud, my husband, asked when I congratulated him on his guitar performance at a Folks School in Brasstown, North Carolina.
Bud’s eyes narrowed as he scanned the yard. “I really wanted you to meet him.”
“I thought I saw a large white dog when I entered the building,” I said turning to follow his gaze.
“He was here a minute ago,” he mumbled absentmindedly. Bud explained that Rosy DeVane, his guitar teacher, told his class an amazing story about the dog.
Rosy appeared just then. After introducing us Bud asked Rosy if she knew where Spirit dog was.
“I’ve no idea,” Rosy said smiling. “He’s like a ghost; he appears and disappears.”
“Does Spirit dog belong to you?” I asked wanting to hear more.
“He does now,” she said with pride. “He’s a full blooded Great Pyrenees AND he’s a healing dog.”
“Oh tell me the story,” I pleaded.
Rosy sent me Spirit Dog’s story a few days later. I sobbed as I read it. After I’d wiped my eyes and pulled myself together I called to thank Rosy and ask if I could publish her story. She graciously agreed.
Rosy wrote that in the Fall of 2006 Spirit Dog lived in the mountains of NE Georgia. She said, “He appeared one day out of nowhere like a fog that covers the early morning land. One could see the dog but not for long. He always seemed to be on a mission with no time for frivolous activity. The mountain residents began to speak of the big white dog. One or another would ask if others had seen him and the answer was always yes, but no one knew where he belonged as if a person would never own the dog.”
In January 2007 Rosy said the local people noticed that the dog took up residence with a ninety year old woman and her daughter. They said the dog had stayed at another man’s residence for several months until he passed away. “Come to find out the dog had been moving around the mountain finding places where he could guard the area and give comfort to the folks if there was illness or passing in the household.”
A month later Rosy got a call from a woman who asked if she’d help her take the dog known as “Spirit Dog” to the humane society.
“Well, Spirit Dog refused to go!” Rosy said it was easier to help him from her home.
“A visit to the vet, which he did get in the car for, revealed that he was around three years old and except for malnutrition and worms he was in good health.”
She said a month later Spirit Dog had gained weight and learned the way of the household which has three other big dogs.
Rosy and her husband had to adjust to Spirit Dog’s habit of barking all night. She explained, “Spirit Dog is a grand guard dog with hearing and smelling abilities way beyond ours.”
Rosy had a powerful dream around this time. “I was floating in our pond surrounded by rocks…not drowning but unsure of my direction when I saw Spirit Dog standing over the pond. The next thing I remember is being lifted up somewhere by Spirit Dog as if I were in danger and he was there to save me. It was a strange sensation.”
Rosy began to see Spirit Dog in a new light. She said, “ I’ve come to believe that Spirit Dog is an old soul with a reason and goal to be here with us and it us up to us to help him as he helps us.”
Then it happened. “My husband had a heart attack in late April. I had gone to work and Spirit Dog lead him to the closest room with a phone and pointed with his nose as if to say, ‘call 911.’ It saved his life.”
A month later Rosy’s husband was home and healing with Spirit Dog’s help. Rosy said, “His heart attack required open heart surgery to correct two 100% blocked coronary arteries. Spirit Dog’s picture was with him and after the surgery he said that he and Spirit Dog have a new direction in life which will be to go around and heal people’s hearts.” Her husband said, “I’ve thought about this a lot and feel people would listen to Spirit Dog, so that is the plan after healing. Spirit Dog will help people heal.”
Rosy DeVane is a guitar instructor at the John C. Campbell Folk School. She is also a Traditional Music/Songteller. She can be reached at 706-896-1312.