My husband and I met because of our love of dogs and . . . well . . . because of the dogs we loved. Our blended family consisted of our Alaskan Malamute, Casper, German Shepherd, Kylie, and yellow Labrador Retriever, Buster.
It was heart wrenching when we had to say goodbye to them one by one over the past few years. We didn't think we were ready to add to our family again, but two young black Labs proved us wrong.
They came into our lives unplanned. They were fourteen and sixteen months respectively when we first met them, intelligent and with great temperaments. They'd been held back by the breeder for show and breeding, but she'd decided to sell them. Looking into their adoring chocolate-brown eyes, we knew instantly that their forever home would be with us.
It was my editor, Paula Eykelhof, who first commented on how wonderful it was that we had brought these rescue dogs into our lives. I protested that they weren't rescue dogs. After all, they had been cared for and never abused. But, as with most things, Paula was right. Having lived their entire lives in kennels, their behaviors told their own story as we gradually introduced them to the big wide world.
I have never crated a dog before, but Harley and Logan needed the comfort and security. Over a year later, they still love to spend time in their kennels, but they prefer to curl up, or stretch out, together in one kennel.
They have their own cushy beds in our bedroom, but still tend to share one. And, yes, they like to sleep on their backs . . . or on top of each other.
And during the day, they seek out the warmth of the sunshine and snuggle.
Logan can't bear to be without us and would love to be able to curl up in our laps.
Harley sees a butterfly (or anything resembling one) and a little switch trips in his head and all else ceases to exist in his world.
Logan's need to be close has results in a damaged laptop screen. (I'll spare you the details!)
Yes, that's a tooth mark on the left middle.
Harley's predilection for chasing butterflies has caused more than a few trampled perennials.
Here is a video clip of Harley at our cottage. You'll hear my husband's voice after Harley catches a Frisbee but abandons the game to pursue a butterfly: http://youtu.be/MwRVhfIdMSQ. Clearly, Harley does not yet consistently heed his master's voice . . . it's that little switch thing! ;-)
Harley and Logan have come so far in the year they have been with us, and continue to delight us each and every day. A computer screen is easily replaced and perennials grow back, but the unconditional love and affection they bring into our lives is limitless and unparalleled.
Do you have an animal story you would like to share? Please leave a comment here or tweet me a picture @KateJamesBooks.