This framed watercolour hangs in my entrance hall. A reminder of some of the doggy friends who have shared their lives with my family over the years. The artist is Gareth Lewis.
There were cats in our house through the years too....
Midge who lost all feeling and movement in his fluffy ginger tail after a bladder operation.
Puff who thought the grass was greener the other side of the fence and went to live with the lady next door.
Dainty Dixie who lived to be almost 20 years old.
Marmo who got hit by a truck when she was little more than a kitten.
All fondly remembered. But unfortunately no portrait.
Patch c.1960-1971. Patch was found as a stray when we still lived in England and was taken in by my husband's family. Nobody claimed him so he stayed. Like all Border Collies, he could run like the wind and was an expert at catching balls and chasing sticks. And loved going out in the car. His ambition was to learn to drive so he didn't have to wait for someone else to take him out.
Blackie c.1970 - 1979. Blackie became part of our family when we bought the small rural farm where he lived. The previous owners couldn't find a home for him, so he stayed when we moved in. He looked ferocious but was really a gentle teddy bear sort of dog. He roamed the neighbourhood looking for treasure, coming home with assorted prizes.... a cow's leg complete with fur still on it, a cooked lobster, and even half a piglet (the back half)!
Sweep c.1969 - 1979. Sweep was another "found" dog. She was lost, living in a ditch, fur all matted and dirty, when my husband brought her home. She soon settled in and lived a happy life with us. She didn't like to be near water.... I wondered if someone had tried to drown her. She produced a litter of four puppies to our surprise. She eventually became diabetic, and blind, and I gave her an insulin needle every morning. But in spite of her blindness, she still managed to escape from the back yard and go for walkies to visit the neighbours.
Shebah 1980 - 1994. Shebah was a typical Siberian Husky. The first six years were the worst! She howled in the night, chased cats and frightened old ladies, knocked down small children, killed the neighbour's chickens (that cost me a fortune), dug huge holes in the lawn, duelled with a skunk and lost, and shed white fluff over everything, especially people wearing dark clothing. She became a neighbourhood character, and when she died, people came knocking on the door to offer their sympathy. Her ashes were sprinkled on the front lawn where she spent so much time laying across the sidewalk, trapping old ladies so they were compelled to bend down and pet her.
Wendy 1994 - 2007. When we lost Shebah, I put my foot down and firmly declared "No more dogs!" So that's when we got our Golden Retriever puppy Wendy. You can read her story here.