Welcome to Dee's Pad

My life as a writer, and as a wife, mother, and grandmother.

Monday, August 19, 2013


Dogs of Chinaberry Lane

I’ve always had dogs from the time I was nine years old. My first dog was named Peewee, and I have no idea what she was. Those were the days when they made the dogs stay outside. I loved Peewee and wanted her in the house. I must’ve had her less than a year when I came home from school one day and she was gone. The chain on her dog house was the only thing I saw. I asked my mom where she was. “Your dad dropped her off in the country. Don’t worry, some farmer will take her in.” Yes, I cried for days. I found it cruel to do that, and no matter how my mom tried convincing me it was okay, I didn’t believe it. A few years later I got a house dog, as they called them. And over the years I have had many house dogs. I do not believe in having a dog that has to live outside, big or small. I’ll skip over many years of many dogs, but want to talk about Maggie, a Belgium shepherd rescue. We had her for ten years. In April 2013 she was 12 years old and had to be put down. She was my husband’s constant companion and a wonderful dog. She loved children and tolerated our two schnauzers in spite of Icarus stealing sticks before she could get to them. There was nothing more she liked than to have someone throw a stick for her. At times she’d snoop until she found the same stick that was thrown into a pile. She loved it when the grandkids were here to play with her outdoors. Losing her was like losing one of our kids. Next came Zeus. I had lost my small dog who was 12 years old the year before. Maggie favored my husband, and I wanted a small dog. For our anniversary my husband said to find a dog I wanted and that would be my present. I found a place selling the white schnauzers, and we made the 35 mile trip to see the puppies. I picked the smallest of the litter. He was supposed to get to no more than 20 pounds. He’s now 33 pounds. 
Zeus is loving, but clumsy. When we had a deck in the back yard, he used to have a hard time climbing the steps and often would fall down the steps. But he’s our weather dog. If he starts to shake or crawls underneath my desk, within half an hour we will have a storm.

We call Zeus our million dollar dog—he broke his leg at 9 weeks, he got bit by a spider and had to have surgery and anything else you can think of, it happens to him. He’s also a hunter. He killed a snake in the yard, he killed a squirrel that ate the screen on the back porch and was there to make another mess, and last week he caught a baby bunny and brought it to the door. That one I wished he hadn’t caught. It was too cute and too dead.

Then came Icarus. I went with my daughter-in-law to look at schnauzer dogs at a kennel going out of business. She bought two dogs, but when we got home she said to tell my husband I bought one. He grumbled and then named the dog. I wrote her out a check and that’s how he came to live with us. He was six months old, all fuzzy and looking like a teddybear.

He and Maggie were good friends and they both ignored Zeus, except to pick on him. When Maggie passed over, Icarus mourned her for a month. It didn’t seem to bother Zeus.

By the time four months had passed, my husband was ready for another large dog. Daughter Michelle was visiting and we went online looking for dogs. We sent him several pictures to look at and he liked the half lab, half Great Dane dog. She, too, is a rescue dog, about 18 months old. Ellie is what we renamed her. She is great with the kids, listens well, and will go into the crate to take naps and sleep at night. She’s all black, not a white spot on her. And she’s still a clumsy puppy. Icarus growls at her if she gets too close when he has a chewy toy. Zeus fears her when her big paws come too close to his head when she wants to play--and he hides under chairs!

Ellie has been in two other homes and took back to the Second Chance Rescue. One single mom decided she didn’t want the dog anymore and the other family only had her a few weeks and learned the kids were allergic to her. She’s trying hard to be good so she can stay at a forever home. We hope nothing ever happens to make her leave, because we want her forever.