A few years later we moved to a new house that my Dad had built for us to live in. Kayo, of course, was delighted with the new location. He had a somewhat rural place to play. He no longer had to protect me from the doctor. (see Kayo #1) By now there were 5 children (I now had a little sister, Beth) and Kayo living with Mom and Dad. Picture below shows the house that Lester built a few years after the events in this post.
My brother and I slept downstairs in a big double bed. Kayo slept in the room with us in a sort of dog bed. He started each night in his bed, but when it got cold, he would jump on the bed and wiggle his way under the covers. Often, he would wake before us, and leave the bed – taking the covers with him when he exited. Soon the cold would wake us.
Kayo was a big German shepherd. But they called him a Police Dog. Nothing was German anymore because of WWII. Even the German measles were renamed. They were the Liberty measles. In New Mexico, an angry mob accused an immigrant miner of supporting Germany and forced him to kneel before them, kiss the flag, and shout “To hell with Hitler.” In Illinois, a group of zealous patriots accused Robert Prager, a German coal miner, of hoarding explosives. Though Prager asserted his loyalty to the very end, he was lynched by the mob. Explosives were never found.
Kayo was my dog now. We played together every day and slept together part of the night! It seemed to me that we communicated with each other: me, a five-year-old human talking and Kayo tipping his head to “listen” carefully to my kid-talk. Somehow that tipping of the head with eyes looking directly at the speaker led one to believe he understood what you were saying. He was my companion, my protector, my best friend. On many an afternoon we would take a nap in the front yard together under a tree – my arm around him, feeling very safe because of him. No one dared to mess with me when Kayo was with me.
Kayo was big and strong and obedient. He liked all of us kids, but spent most of his time with me. Our connection grew stronger.