In the sea foam green sea, Miles suddenly realized he had wandered into deeper waters. His body had begun to float, and he was unsure of what to do. He became worried! Miles’ muscular shoulders tipped down, his beard dipped into the water, and his hind end floated up to the surface, like a buoy.
Miles pushed his ears back with concern! But always a problem-solver in the face of fear, he began experimenting. He lifted up his front legs to balance his body in the water. He started a few jerky, tense small doggie paddle motions with his legs. All of the sudden, the sensation of floating seemed less frightening!
Miles didn’t know he could move this way, gliding through the smooth water with ease! His little eyebrows relaxed — who knew little tufts of fur could be so expressive — and he began to paddle through the warm sea. His back was lapped with the gentle water, and his body relaxed. Miles could swim!
Fun Note: I am currently selling wall-ready “box prints” of this illustration to benefit greymuzzle.org. greymuzzle.org is an organization that provides funding for senior dog rescue programs across the United States. This is a tough time for everyone. I want to help the older dogs of all mixes and breeds who are finding themselves in hard times. 75% of proceeds go to Zazzle for printing and shipping. My artist’s proceeds, which are 25%, will be donated directly to greymuzzle.org.
I like this very much. It is like a poem.
Thank you Judi! Sometimes those special moments in life really feel like a living poem. This moment for me feels that way.
This is the sweetest short story with beautiful illustration! ❤️
Thank you Denise! Has George ever tried swimming before?
Lovely, I adore this!
Aww that is wonderful Mary Anne!
Our Welsh Terrier, Winston, loves to swim in Lake Michigan. My very first Welsh, Kyna, was the same way. You couldn’t keep her out of the water….whether a swimming pool, lake or pond…she loved everything about water.
That is wonderful LeaAnne, and it is so healthy for them! Lake Michigan is stunning, you are lucky to live where you do!
That must have been such a sweet sweet moment to have witnessed! I love your expressive drawings of the event. Swimming in the ocean is truly magical, isn’t it?
Love you always,
Darcy and Sally
I think about it all of the time, especially now that he is such a water pup! Has Sally swam before?
Sally doesn’t like water much. She generally avoids getting wet, and when she’s at the ocean or a lake she runs into and away from waves, so she never really gets in water deep enough to swim.. Chester loved swimming… every chance he got he’d swim, but Sally just doesn’t like it yet… maybe… someday…
Darcy and Sally
You’ll have to come visit us, where the tide goes out and the sand and water are low and warm! That is how Miles went from water-averse to a water pup. After he learned to swim on his own, without any pressure, he started seeking out water on his own. He’s still fancy like Sally, he is not a puddle jumper dog, haha! We are lucky to have such clean dogs!
You and Miles made my day with his swimming story. Yes – those eyebrows can speak volumes!
I agree — how IS it that little tufts of fur can say everything and more?
Love the artwork of Miles in water. Nice expression of a beautiful experience.
Thank you Kim! In art school the only class I never could get a good grade in was drawing. Thankfully real life isn’t graded, I love to draw!
Love this short story. You have a gift. Continue writing ! You are amazing….❤️ Love your illustrations….
Thank you Sharon for your kind words, and most of all, for Miles ❤️
The artwork is beautiful. And Miles is lucky to be with someone who notices when he needs a little time to figure things out.
Thank you! And I owe that to Miles, as he has probably been the most patient with me the countless other times I am always trying to figure things out that make perfect sense to him! 🙂
Sailor experienced that exactly. Looked so funny when her back legs floated up ,then she began paddling! 😊
Marilyn, that is too funny! Now she is a sea dog, too!
A beautiful piece. Just loved it. And Miles, how tenacious he is. He is such a champ! Unfortunately can’t say the same for Tory’s first experience with swimming this summer. But she is coming along.
Hi Jean! What is Tory like with Swimming? I am so glad you like the piece!
So Tory’s first time in the pool, she immediately started paddling with her front legs but not her back legs. So very quickly she became vertical and started going down. We then put the life jacket on her which kept her afloat but still she does not always use her back legs. Likes to keep them tucked in like a duck.
Beautiful Illustrations!!! I see a beautiful children’s book with your drawings in your future. And of course featuring MILES!!!!
Finn loves to swim, we can’t keep him out of the swimming pool. He loves to be splashed so he can chase the water droplets!!
Thank you so much Donna, I am so humbled that you enjoyed my illustrations! Finn is such a lucky guy with his swimming pool! 🙂
Wow Emma! I always knew you made such beautiful drawings – but these, combined with the story – Wow! You absolutely have to write children’s books about welshies – they’re such a great subject matter because they’re both mischievous and determined. I’ve always wanted to do that but don’t have your art skills . . . or your way with words 🙂 If you wrote some I would buy ALL the copies!
I loved this so much! Miles was always a bit resistant to swimming wasn’t he? Oliver learned nearly instantly at his first visit to a lake at 1 year old, which surprised us completely and relieved me because as a non-swimmer, I had no idea how to help teach him. Living far from the ocean with not many dog friendly places to swim means he doesn’t get the opportunity very often, and he’s a bit particular – shallow entry only, no waves, sandy bottoms preferred to rocky/weedy – but it’s magical when it happens!
Thank you Danielle!! You are very creative and talented, so that means a lot coming from you! The feeling is mutual! Miles definitely didn’t automatically trust water, and he’s not the sort of dog who runs up to deep water and launches himself in! But now he likes wading through water and swimming, with very much the same preferences as your description of Oliver’s! 🙂
What beautiful illustrations to accompany a lovely story. As you know, Senior dogs (like Lily) are very special to me, so I could not resist buying the print. I am hoping it will inspire Ceri to “take the plunge” in our pond. I know she will in her own time, especially with Lily to cheer her on.
Aww Elise that is wonderful! To anyone who is reading this Elise is a champion for her senior dog, Lily. Elise I can’t wait to hear more about the pond over time… Although if Ceri can get any more athletically toned, we are all in trouble! Hehe!
I love the graphics that go with this story. Winnie, the Welsh Terrier who lived with my wife and me was not the swimmer. For a couple of years, I would take her to the local “Puppy Paddle” which was a fundraiser for the local animal shelter. The end of the pool season would arrive and the day after the pool closed, the authorities turned it over to the humane society to have a fundraiser. Winnie enjoyed going to see all the other dogs. We would go and take all the necessary gear and supplies (water, towels, treats for Win, and dry shoes for me). We’d get set up and enter the pool and things would go well for a brief time and she would swim a bit, but then she would get excited about all the other dogs and want to see them and she would stop paddling. At this point, she did not float at all but would sink. Watching a Welsh Terrier being underwater made you realize that is not their natural habitat and I would lift her up. She was content with this and while I was holding her she would want to go over to meet and greet the other dogs. Not being a one-time learner on this, we went for about five years each with similar results. The difference between the first time and all the others was that I had learned that when Winnie stopped paddling she was finished paddling for the day and I would have to keep her above water.
I miss my Winnie and the adventures we had like that.
I saw that you were doing a fundraiser for the grey muzzle foundation. I made a donation in memory of my Welshie. I did not want the artwork. It is great artwork but it would be too painful to have around the house.
JC that is absolutely wonderful. Thank you for being a really valued part of the community here in the comments. You are appreciated and your contribution to the grey muzzle project will change lives. Thank you. <3