All my life I have been around animals, mostly dogs, but I’ve managed to find ‘strays’ in many furry variations over the years, including a mouse that I smuggled into my room when I was six. Not long after I had made a nest for him in my top draw, he disappeared, only to reappear in my mother’s top drawer. He was quickly dispatched to the kid down the road who was allowed to have mice. I tried my luck again and again, and all sorts of creatures ‘followed’ me home, including a white kitten, a chicken, a turtle, a lizard and a rabbit. Most of them were given to good homes at a rapid rate by my mother, who was not an advocate of many things that had more legs and less toes than her.
Not long after my seventh birthday my grandmother came to live with us and brought along her furry friend, Angel, a black and tan terrier. Finally, something my mother couldn’t get rid of. My salvation had arrived! I was in dog heaven. I told all my friends I had a dog. I took Angel for walks, I fed her, shared my icecreams and lollies, washed her and talked to her. Angel lived until I was seventeen and she set the precedent for the rest of my life.
My first dog was a German Shepherd. I named her Nishka and took her everywhere with me. She was my copilot on the road, my wingman and my protector. She was loyal, loving, and gone too soon.
Many years later a wonderful little fellow came into my life, much smaller than Nishka, but my greatest love of all. Jackson was my main furball, my best buddy, and a true gentleman. He was with me through thick and thin, sickness and health, for almost thirteen years. When he left me a part of me went along with him on his journey.
Right now I am the proud mamma of two lively Bichons and a little old Maltese. They bring me a lot of joy, and keep me going through the good and the bad. They each have their own personalities, and they all have different views on how things should be done around this place. Ruby is the boss, although the other two think they have it over her. She swans around the house like a diva, and of course, expects all the trappings becoming to her status. Angus is the strutter. He struts around this place like he owns it. He is full of himself, but no match for the conniving diva. Dylan is the senior citizen of the troupe. He has been with me for nearly fourteen years, and is the son of my best buddy, Jackson. I treat him well and with the respect that he deserves. He’s seen it all and done a lot. How he tolerates Angus I will never know.
They are like children, my dogs. They are naughty, mischievous, loving and they are constant. They will always be what they are until they die. Dogs don’t pretend to like you, they don’t lie, take your money or stay out late. They are just there, and they are happy to love you for what you are, despite your perceived faults and failings.
I will always have a little piece of heaven as long as I have a dog.