My daughter, Jasona, lives in Colorado with her husband, three children and two dogs. A few days ago, their Australian Shepherd, Maggie, unexpectedly, died. She was ten years old but had been in good health. Jasona came home in the afternoon and found her in distress. As her breathing grew labored, Jasona laid her hands on her, blessed her, thanked her for being such a good friend to all of them. Jasona told her if it was time for her to go, she could go. Maggie took her last breath, then left her body behind.
The grief of losing a family dog some of us know only too well. All our precious animals will die. Anyone who has lost a pet should read Randy Alcorn’s answer to the question “Do dogs go to heaven?” You can find it in his book “Heaven”.
Maggie joined Jasona’s family when she as a puppy. When my ex-husband, Bob, arrived at my daughter’s house shortly after they got Maggie, all three of the children ran out into the driveway to greet him. One of them fell and got hurt. There was a lot of screaming and crying as the children came back into the house with their grandfather. Maggie assumed that whatever had happened was Bob’s fault. She hated him for it! She growled and barked at him. She didn’t trust anything he did. She never got over that. Every time Bob came to visit through the years, she had the same reaction to him.
Maggie was a friendly dog. She loved everyone who came to visit, except Bob, and me.
A few months after the incident in the driveway, I came to visit. I had not met Maggie yet. Maggie had the same reaction to me that she had to Bob! She barked and barked at me when I arrived. When she finally stopped barking, she stood back and growled at me.
“Wow,” said my six-year-old granddaughter, “Maggie doesn’t even like someone who used to be married to Papa!”
Maggie watched my every move, every time, I came to visit. She did not trust me. Even the last time I saw Maggie a few months ago, and after 10 years, she still didn’t trust me. She would jump up and put her front feet on my chest when I sneezed! Somehow, she knew that I was connected to Bob. Even though Bob and I had never been there together. I didn’t know how, but she could sense there had been a “one flesh” relationship. Then I learned something that explained it.
I read an article about scientists who were studying brain tissue from deceased women. I don’t know what they were looking for, but they discovered DNA in the women’s brains that did not belong to the women. They subsequently learned that when a woman has sexual intercourse with a man, his DNA can be found in her brain tissue forever. After reading the first article, I did more searching to verify this study. I found numerous articles on the internet confirming the study’s findings.
Of course, I thought about Maggie. Can dogs can sense a person’s DNA? We know that dogs can sense things we can’t. Service dogs can be trained to sense a seizure before it happens. They can “smell” cancer. They “know” when someone is ill or in trouble. I once saw a demonstration of search and rescue dogs. How does the dog know which way the person he is looking for went? I have wondered this watching our own dogs perfectly following the “scent” of one our children—going from room to room in the same pattern that the child did. How did he know? The search and rescue dog trainer said that they had taken a dog to a large sports stadium after all the fans had left. They gave the dog the “scent” of the person they will looking for. The dog went directly to the seat where the man had been! How could the dog sort that out with 10’s of thousands of other “scents”?
Maggie knew of my connection to Bob. I don’t know if she could smell his DNA, but she knew something of him was in me.
God meant it literally when he said, “The two shall be one flesh.”
Every woman should know this: if you have sex with someone, that man’s DNA will be with you the rest of your life.
Genesis 2:24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.