My nickname among some has become "The Dog Lady" and perhaps with good reason. I have so many dog "friends". Some are homeless, some have owners, some are now mine! Neighborhood dogs come by to visit me and sit on the porch with me while I drink my morning coffee.
Not only do I love dogs, THEY LOVE ME TOO!! Dogs follow me, find me, sniiiiiifffff me out!! Lost dogs seem to show up in my presence, as if they've heard through some grapevine that I am the Doggie Messiah -- a savior for the weary and hungry. They show up at my door. They find their way to my shop. Recently, one even turned up INSIDE my house! Stories to be told.
So, my husband and I have 5 dogs. Yup. You read it right, 5, f-i-v-e. Well, 4 and 1/4 if you want to be fair (4 big dogs and one that's a 1/4 of their size). Having this many dogs on the beach in the country is a completely different experience than having that many pets in a city. The dogs have space, the beach, freedom and lots of time with their human counterparts.
When my husband and I met, he had 2 dogs:
Pig Pen" after the Charlie Brown character. She's a Black Lab and absolutely cannot stay clean for a second. She's constantly dusty and dirty and always has some sort of gnats, flies or mosquitos caravanning behind her. In her defense, what she lacks in cleanliness, she makes up for in unconditional love and faithfulness. Age 10 and counting!!
Merlin, the big, the brave and the bad. Can jump and almost do a full 180. Loves to swim and play fetch in the ocean waves. A sucker for any kind of petting, but a fighter. You know those signs people put on their gates that say "Perro Bravo" or "Guard Dog" - those signs were made for him. A mix of Lab, Dalmation and who knows what else. Aged 5 +/-
To those two, I added my one dog, Johnny (aka the worlds bestest dog ever), who passed away two years later in December 2009. After Johnny died, together we adopted....
Carmen, my first accidentally adopted dog. I first met her in the summer of 2008 and thought she was a street dog. She did have an owner though and about a year after I met her, they gave her away to another family about 15 miles away. She was gone a few months, then ran away from them and showed up at my door. The prior owner could not figure out how she had found her way back to town. I'd say she chose me. A gorgeous mix of Ridgeback, Pitbull and who knows what else. Approximately 3 years old.
And finally, my last dog. (Really! I don't want any more!)
These are the dogs I call "mine", however I have tons of pooches in my life. I have a whole other life that goes on between me and these dogs and me and the outside world.