Sunday, June 4, 2017

"Oh, Kaye!" chats about dogs





Do any of you recall seeing this on the Johnny Carson show many years ago?

And if you did, did you cry right along with Jimmy Stewart and Johnny Carson?

Oh, boy, I sure did.


"I will always love a dog named Beau."


That line killed me.  And still does.


Like many of you, I've had dogs and I've had cats and I have loved each of them boundlessly.


And I will always love them.


Most of you got to know Harley over the years and he was a pretty special little guy.







Even wrote a book, he did.





When we said good-bye to him my heart broke into a million pieces.


There will never be another Harley.


But the heart is a pretty amazing thing.


My heart's been broken a lot, and I admit, I'm surprised by the fact that it always mends.  It may not mend completely, and it may mend in a way to be different than it once was.  But what I've learned is that while it's mending it also seems to expand somehow.  It accepts and makes room for more love.


I will always love a dog named Harley.


But there's a new kid in town.  And this little girl is working very hard to help mend our hearts, make us laugh and remember the joy a pet brings to our lives.

Donald and I are just not ever going to be able to live our lives without a little furry four-legged creature sharing the home fires with us, it seems.


Meet Annabelle.  She'll be with us for awhile.




I hope we have lots of time with her.

Time to hold her in our hearts and spoil her rotten.


So, now, Dear Reds.  Anyone want to tell us about the pets that have stolen your hearts over the years? 




60 comments:

  1. So sad and yet so wonderful to have had Harley in your life [and I love his book] . . . .
    Annabelle is so cute, Kaye . . . I’m sure she loves being part of your family just as much as you love having her there.

    When John and I were first married, he had two fence-climbing golden retrievers that I would invariably end up chasing around the neighborhood in the middle of the night. Many other dogs followed Gina and Rex, as did several cats, and all have a special place in our hearts . . . .

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    1. Oh, Joan. Fence climbing goldens. But with the eyes they have, how could you stay mad?

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  2. Oh, Kaye, I loved following Harley through your posts and pictures. My seven-year-old granddaughter read Harley's book when we were on the plane going to Orlando last Monday, and she thought Harley was adorable. And, now I'm enjoying Annabelle and her antics. She's a special one, too.

    My first pet and dog was a dog named Spot. I know. Originality wasn't my strong point in naming my pet. What happened, as so often does, is that someone's dog in the neighborhood had a litter of puppies, and my next door neighbor and best friend Jimmy and I wanted to each get on of those puppies. My mother had said no to a dog, but she was in the hospital for something not too serious when the pups were to be let go. I guess my father was distracted with four children and no wife at home because I got my Spot puppy and Jimmy got his Snowball puppy. When my mother came home from the hospital, Spot had settled in, and she relented. As it turned out, when a few years later, Spot went missing and we never found him, my mother was brokenhearted and looked for him harder than anyone.

    With the exception of Spot, it seems all my dogs have found me in some way or another. Barry, my husband's and my baby before we had babies, was a Cocker Spaniel who showed up on the streets of Louisville, and my sister-in-law found him, and then he found his way to us. Fella was a shaggy dog that showed up around our neighborhood a short bit before we had kids, and we took him in. Abbie, who passed away just two years ago, was an Australian Cattle Dog whom my daughter picked out at the pound and who became my dog. I'm finally about ready for another dog, and when my husband retires next year, we will be getting one. I'm not sure what kind yet, but if the pattern continues, I won't really get to pick out what kind.

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    1. Kathy, it almost sounds like dogs adopt YOU!

      Deb Romano

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    2. I'm with Deb, Kathy. I think there's a dog in your future. And you will know it when it shows up.

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    3. I'm looking forward to being chosen very soon. Hahaha!

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  3. Oh, I forgot to add that even though I'm not a cat person, we had a cat for 22 years. Salty came to our house right after we moved in with our kids already in tow. He once disappeared for six weeks, but he came back and lived a long life.

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    1. I remember Donald telling me he wasn't a cat person - - - until he met my Pyewacket and they became best buddies. When we lost her, it just wouldn't do until we went to the animal shelter where two kitties followed his every step. They came home with us and lived a long time and are still mentioned often. Martha and George.

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    2. Aw, that's so sweet, Kaye. I think Donald might just be a softie for animals period. I love the names--Pyewacket, Martha, and George. I would like to know where Pyewacket comes from.

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  4. We had a great cat (before I was hospitalized with allergy-caused bronchial pneumonia) named Eloise. A black and white that meowed like a Siamese and if you bent over would jump onto your shoulder, press her nose in your ear, and purr like an idling car engine. A lovely companion.

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    1. Eloise! Oh, I love that name and she sounds like my kinda gal. I know she's sorry she made you so sick. That breaks my heart.

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  5. The only way I resemble a snowflake is in my allergies to cats, which can cause complete meltdowns. But a young cat unwisely chose our house to hang around one deeply cold winter. My two tender-hearted little daughters (and pet-starved, thanks to a no-fur policy in the house) begged us me to let them keep it. Our neighbor drove the cat to the vet for me (and I joined him there), and we got her shots, etc. He provided a padded cat house for her to sleep in on our porch, and a bag of food, and we were in business.

    The girls named her Peaches 'N Cream Tigerlily Maslowski, because of her orange and white fur, and she was a pretty little thing. My middle daughter told me, years later, that she would bring Peaches in the house to "show her around" while carrying her. Everyone loved that little cat, even me, although I couldn't do more than pet her for a minute then run inside and scrub furiously.

    About a year and a half later, my husband packed up and moved to California for ten months. The kids and I would take turns with him traveling across the country for visits, but he was driving out. We were all weepy about this coming separation, naturally, and no one noticed where Peaches was, until a couple of hours after he was gone. We still don't know what happened, but she vanished just as she had arrived, mysteriously.

    For weeks I dreaded seeing her along a road, but we never saw her again.

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    1. I'm going to believe Peaches 'N Cream Tigerlily wandered off knowing she was needed to bring some love to another family. She may be up to family #13 by now!

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  6. And Kaye, Annabelle is adorable. I'm sure Harley would approve.

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    1. aw, thanks, Karen. You know, I think he would too.

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  7. Annabelle needs a smooch, Kaye--from me! Too many pets over the years--loyal, funny, ferociously protective. When I moved into this house, I declared "No more pets!" I was on the road all the time, sometimes in the field for weeks at a time, so didn't think it was fair to have a pet. Then Murphy showed up around the corner of the house one April afternoon. He was a gray tiger cat, hardly more than a big kitten. He loved the boys dearly--liked to hang out and keep them company. He would keep me company too as I did yard work or sewed or read, you get the picture. But he wouldn't use a litter box--always went to the door to let you know he wanted out. I knew there was always the possibility that he might not come back after one of his rambles. A year and a half ago, that's what happened. I searched the roadways, but we never saw him again. And even though we now have four cats--each unique--there'll never be another Murphy.

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    1. Smooch delivered, Flora! Murphy sounds like quite the cat, and you know - he may still show back up. It happens! He's off on a great adventure and will bring home stories and trucks of gold.

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  8. How is Annabelle doing? What kind of a personality does she have? And oh my goodness, we had so many pets as a kid… But as grownups, you know, I have had Lola and Leon, cats extraordinaire.
    They were somewhat quirky, to say the least… They lived in the same house for 14 years, and never acknowledged that the other existed.

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    1. Lola and Leon stories crack me up! They remind me of a grumpy old married couple.

      Annabelle is a handfull! Willful and stubborn and lovable and sweet and very very very smart, which does seem to fit Corgis in general (with a whole lot of clown tossed in). And she's a cuddler. And we think she knows her #1 purpose in life when we brought her some was to mend some broken hearts.

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  9. I have always had a dog, and often had a cat, but two dogs stand out for me. One was Finnian, an Irish setter who was born to a family down the street. They'd bred his mother, hoping to sell the pups for quick cash, but Finn got left behind by the buyers, then left behind for real when the family moved out one jump ahead of their landlord. I brought him home and explained the situation to my mom, fearing she would say "no dogs." What she actually said was, "Do you think he'd like this soup bone?" Finn was my constant companion through high school and college. I even cast him in a play I directed, where he won great applause.

    There were other dogs over the years, but then, one day, as I was driving home, I saw a gorgeous border collie lying in the ditch by the side of the road, way out in ranch country with no houses nearby. I stopped to see if he was injured, but he got up, limped toward me, and tried to jump into my truck. No injuries, but he was sick and starving, so I took him to my vet, named him Liam, then tried to talk my mother into adopting him. Mother wasn't ready for a new dog, and by the time she was, Liam had chosen me as his person. That was a good thing in the long run, because when my husband died a few years later, Liam may have been the only thing that kept me going. Calm, patient, wise, and confident in his ability to handle any situation, Liam graciously allowed me to be his co-shepherd in a world where he saw everyone else as sheep. The vet estimated he was about seven when I found him, and I had him eleven years. It was a hard day when I had to let him go, but he taught me lessons about living well right up to the end. These days I have three border collies, because one is not enough to step into his paw prints, and I foster dogs for a border collie rescue group. I wouldn't be without a dog.

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    1. Gigi--border collies and English shepherds are the best dogs! (Sorry, Kaye--Corgis are, as Mary says below--adorable!). My mom had a border collie when she and my dad were first married--up in the hills of eastern Kentucky. It was right after the war and my dad was going to school and working on the railroad, and Bob the border collie looked after my mom and the livestock. My dad never worried about her. He brought home an English shepherd to us--the runt of the litter. It was like losing a sibling when she died.

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    2. oh, Gigi. I'm sitting here crying and in love with the very special dogs you were blessed with.

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    3. They were wonderful dogs, as are my current pack. I hope Annabelle is wonderful for you, too, Kaye, as she certainly is cute as cute can be. I think all the herding breeds are bred to be really smart, Flora, because, seriously, herding is all about personnel management, and those dogs often have to make executive decisions when they are up in the hills or out in the far pasture. When my three team up at home to herd me, I might as well give up and give in. They've already got it all figured out.

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    4. Oh, shoot, Gigi, now you've made me cry in my tea, remembering Liam. He was a special soul, truly.

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    5. I love the stories of rescue that in turn are rescues of humans, too. Finnian and Liam sound so special, Gigi, and it appears that Liam was a rescue for you, too.

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  10. Awww, how sweet. I adore Corgis. They are so cute.

    We had a dog, Casey, with us for 14 years. Just a mutt, barked a lot (part beagle), but so loving. I remember him guarding our kids when they were babies. He put up with a lot. When he died, I would have gotten another dog almost immediately, but The Hubby said "no." He's still saying "no." Not because he dislikes dogs (he is allergic to cats), but because he doesn't think it's the right time. We're too busy. Still working.

    But as soon as I'm at home more - I'm getting a dog. I have dreams of rescuing a racing greyhound. The Girl wants a Golden Retriever. I told her sure - and she'll be responsible for grooming it and cleaning up all that hair. =)

    We are currently dog-sitting my brother's dog, a little Yorkie-poo. I call her "small dog." She gives us our periodic dog-fix.

    Mary/Liz

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    1. Mary, I think you're being very smart. The time does have to be right. I'm not sure Annabelle would be here but for the fact that I'm retired.

      Sometimes a periodic dog-fix might be "just right!"

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    2. May I modestly suggest that fostering a dog for a rescue group can give you a temporary dog fix, without the long-term commitment? The dogs need a place to be, and it gives you an opportunity to "date" a lot of dogs without settling down before you're ready.

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  11. To me, home is just not home without a dog in it. And cats. Being the only 2-legged being in the house now I don't know what I would do without all my guys. When my mother died my son suggested to me "imagine all her pets running to greet her in heaven."

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    1. Judi, I absolutely believe as your son does! And you will feel right at home reunited with will those 4-legged fur babies.

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  12. I'm so sorry about Harley's death, and welcome Annabelle! When our beloved fifteen year old standard poodle Toby died, we decided to become a one dog family. Hah! Five months later while I was walking Boo, the trees bare of leaves, winter closing in, it hit me. We all needed a puppy. I found Jazz, with her diva personality and almond shaped eyes. I'm back to walking ninety pounds of lunging standard poodles (squirrels! deer! roadkill!). Life is good.

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    1. Aw, Margaret, I love this. And yep, life IS good!!

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  13. Some good part of my college money came from breeding Boston Terriers, AKC registered, sold for $35 per pup. The wonderful dog that produced this for me was my only pet as a child, Mitzi. We regarded pets differently in the 40s and 50s, well loved but not a member of the family like my babies are today. Mitzi was an outside dog, slept on the back porch winter (heated and enclosed) and summer. Dogs then roamed the neighborhood, and she was a well known visitor to a lot of kitchen doors. She carried her food dish with her, a Folger's coffee can, the old squatty kind. She had a route that never varied, and she got scraps at each stop. I can see her now with that can in her mouth, off to dinner out.

    I adored her, but she never slept in my bed, rarely even came in the house. It was the way of things. Once a year she had five gorgeous puppies, sired by my grandfather's male Boston. And once a year I cried as they were all sold, watched another 150 bucks go into the college fund.

    Mitzi died when I was a senior in high school She hadn't been bred quite a while, and, in her dotage, was the neighborhood pet. My mother found her one morning, on the back porch, curled up in her cardboard box bed, in her final sleep.

    There was only one Mitzi

    I've had other dogs, like Maggie the GSD, my children's pet, who had a litter of puppies sired by a High Fence Jumper. Our mama cat had a litter at the same time. Mama disappeared, and I tossed three one week old kittens into the pile of eight three day old puppies. Maggie raised them all. The kittens clawed their way to the first sitting at every meal time. Maggie was magnificent. She also was spayed as soon as those pups went to new homes.

    There was only one Maggie

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    1. I didn't have another dog until Toby the Boy Prince came into my life eleven years ago. I had hospice patients at a nursing home up the road, and I kept seeing these adorable puppies there, brought in by the finance officer who raised Pomapoos in her off hours. The didn't smell, didn't shed and were smart as hell. I decided right then that I would have one but not until my retirement.

      Exactly two months after that last day at work, I called Pam, said I wanted a little girl puppy. She had two males, 10 weeks. I went out to her farm to have a look and came home with Toby, now Toby Sue since his neutering. What a totally amazing dog! He is the most laid back smartest cutest -- shall I go on or would you rather I stopped here?

      When Toby was 18 months old, a casting call went out from Nazereth College for a Toto, Wizard of Oz production. On a whim, I called them up and took Toby in to audition. Within two weeks I'd forgotten about it, and then came the call back! He and one other not very bright not very well trained not nearly as adorable dog were chosen. Equity rules say dogs cannot be in two consecutive performances, and this production also had two Dorothys. Toby's Dorothy was biracial, just like he was. All the best people/dogs are you know. But both dogs and both Dorothys had to be in the theater, just in case. It was a long haul of nightly rehearsals and then time to tread the boards. But oh what an experience it was!

      Toby was amazing, hit his mark every time,and you should have seen him pull back that curtain! Hw adored the costumed characters, particularly the Munchkins. All the little girl Munchkins dreamed of being Dorothy, would pick Toby up and dance and sing Over the Rainbow. He played five of ten performances, and after each one he stood out in the lobby to be petted by a good many of the 800 children who attended.

      One mother stopped me and said, "we have to have that dog." Huh? No way lady. However, she was with Therapy Dogs International, and she wanted me to have Toby tested, emotional therapy dog potential being obvious.

      Thus started his second career. For a few years we carried a case load of 4-6 hospice patients. Toby was perfect, never once misbehaved, and his parting shot was to put both front paws on his client, bow his head and say his prayers. Not a dry eye in the bunch. He made pain go away and faces smile. Yes, he knew when someone was actively dying, would then be very reluctant to leave them.

      Now he is in retirement, still romps and plays with Penny Lane (our alpha female and they don't call little girls bitches for nothin') Penny is also a Pomapoo, is also bright and smart and loveable and I adore her.

      But there is only one Toby. And only one Penny.

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    2. Finta, you have made my day with these stories. What amazing and incredible animals you've raised! I life my glass to Toby, and to Penny. (and to you).

      I've been thinking about your statement about how we, as a society, have changed toward our dogs over the years. It's true, I think. They are treated more as family members now than they were back in the day.

      I started noticing this more right after Hurricane Katrina when people were so heartbroken about the pets being left behind. It seems as though more hotels started becoming doggie friendly with the realization that pets were family.

      Luckily, Harley was a great traveler and went everywhere we went. We're planning on the same for Annabelle.

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    3. I have long wished I had the time to train a dog for therapy work, Finta. Good for you and Toby, to put yourselves forward for that. My Zoe isn't fond of other dogs (you are so right about the girls!) but she loves to let anyone, particularly kids, pet her and hug her. I think she'd do well as a visiting dog at a children's hospital.

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  14. Oh KAYE! So good to have you back. Has it been a while or am I just forgetful? Annabelle is adorable, and I love it when people name dogs for me. I remember when you got her, puppies help to fill that dog-shaped hole in our hearts

    Ann in Rochester

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    1. Finta/Ann - Thank You! It's so nice to be missed. I'm here only once a month, and sometimes that does feel like an awfully long time.

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  15. Kaye, Annabelle looks like a princess! While I miss hearing about Harley, I'm so glad your home once more has a dog.

    If I lived in a warmer climate I'd get a dog. Dogs and I adore each other. But we have icy winters here and I'm scared about falling on ice or snow while walking a dog. I've got back issues that make it a little too easy for me to slip on the ice. A neighbor that I barely know has a little dog who drags her over to me whenever I see them out walking together. That little pooch knows she'll get a tummy rub from me!

    Deb Romano

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  16. Deb - You know, I'm still trying to figure out exactly how she got here. Seems the last conversation I recall about a new dog was "Maybe later - but not yet." If part of our property wasn't fenced in, we wouldn't be able to have one either for all those exact same reasons!

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    1. How she got here? Now that's a story you've got to tell us one day!

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  17. Cats. As you know, I have cats in my life. But your dogs have had a special place in my heart, Kaye. I cried just reading about Harley. And, Annabelle makes me laugh. Hugs and thoughts of those special corgis.

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    1. Harley was a pretty special little guy, huh? I miss him every day. We also miss having cats. ONE of these days there shall be kitties - one of these days.

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  18. To paraphrase the quote, the cracks in our hearts allow the light to shine through
    Libby

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    1. i love this, and yes - it certainly does.

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  19. Kaye, Annabelle is adorable!!! And I'm very sure that Harley would approve of her:-)

    We had a poodle (toy) when I was growing up. My parents adopted her from a great uncle who was moving to Mexico and couldn't take the dog with them. She was not, bless her, the ideal dog for a nine-year-old dog-crazy little girl.

    I had a whacko Great Dane for a while in my late teens, but she was not the ideal dog for a college student, and she eventually went to live with a family with four kids and a huge fenced yard. I'm sure she was very happy.

    Then, when my daughter was seven, her dad brought home a 7-week old cocker spaniel puppy as a surprise. He was blond, so we named him Taffy, and he was the dog of my heart, my first true dog love. He only lived to be nine--he had brain cancer--and when he died I thought my heart would break. But we found we couldn't stand being dogless, and a few weeks later we brought home our first German shepherd puppy, Hallie. Hallie is gone now, and Neela, our second GSD. But we have Dax and Jasmine, who are my darlings.

    They are all different, and all special, and all blessings that grace us every day that they are with us.

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    1. Our first and only dog growing up was also a cocker spaniel, Debs. She was blond, too, and we named her Nugget. She was very energetic, but also very snuggly. She loved to curl up with you on the couch. My husband grew up with enormous sheep dogs, and he loved to curl up with them on the couch! You always want to snuggle with your dog, no matter the size!

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    2. Debs, I have followed your pictures and stories about your dogs for as long as I can remember. I have fallen in love with each of them.

      Ingrid - you know, that is the living truth! We do want to snuggle with them no matter how big they are, don't we?

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  20. She's beautiful, Kaye!

    Many have stolen my heart and many more have expanded it. There's always room for one more. Each is unique, none take the place of another, all are special.

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    1. They really are. Each holds a special place in our lives and in our hearts, and each has a personality all their own.

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  21. So sorry about Harley. So glad about Annabelle. I lost my border terrier/mix Boo back in September. He'd been ill and was going downhill. We had a vet come to the house to put him down while I held him in my lap. I'm not over it. We do have my father-in-law's dog Jack to care for. He is a sweet dog but needy. I don't think I can get another dog while Jack is here. And to be honest, I am not ready for another dog. It hurts so much to lose one.

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    1. Pat, I'm so sorry about Boo. It is a hurt we carry with us forever, I think.

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  22. In my lifetime, I've loved so many...Pug, Ben, Shaggy, Grampy, Fluffy, Irish, Gus, Olga, Sam, Sylvester, Cullie, Nicki, Chubby, Lucy, Patsy, Loretta, Kevin, Hamsty, Buddy, Amigo, Annie, and Otto. Lots of heartbreak in this roll call but even more love. I have come to believe that the heart isn't divided by the number of loves you have, it's multiplied. Congrats on your baby girl, Kaye. She's adorable.

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  23. Corgis are the absolute best dogs. We are on our second one. Paddy aka Paddington Corgi Bear, turned a year old on April 5. He is a bundle of job, mischief, smarts and athletic energy. He could play fetch, with his favorite neon green bone 24/7.
    Our first Corgi, Shelby was the Queen of the house. We got her a few months after Hurricane Katrina from a woman who had to downsize her farm. Shelby stole my heart the minute she walked into my house and laid at my feet for a belly rub. We had Shelby until November, 2014 when she crossed over the Rainbow Bridge suddenly on that morning.
    Paddy has captured my heart, but I will never ever forget my girl Shelby.

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    1. I think, Annette, that we will always be a Corgi family. Like you, we find them to be all those things with a big dose of magical tossed in.

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  24. Annabelle is adorable! Sad to hear that Harley passed away. I recall your lovely stories about Harley. Someday I would like to have a corgi.

    We had a family dog named Lester. He lived for about 12 years? He was a cockpoo. Our family misses him. I called him a little lamb because he had curly hair like a lamb. he had a lot of energy for a little dog. Very sweet natured and loved people.

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