Remembering my canine pals. A warm, lighthearted look at dearly departed pets and their quirky habits. Whilst these memories often bring on a tear or two, I still smile at their fun-loving antics.
Before Lucy, my lovely though lively Sprocker Spaniel, my husband and I were blessed with a succession of other dogs – each with their own distinct personality. Here are some random snippets of our time with these wonderful family members.
Jim – Victor of Jimbolia – a male Hungarian Viszla
Jim was our first encounter with the Viszla breed. As a side note, the breeder’s children nicknamed the pup Jimbud because of his little Buddha belly. Very independently minded with a rather crafty edge, Jim would, despite his many walks, find ways to sneak out of our house and take himself on an adventure around the town.
Taking nearby footpaths and alleyways, the wily dog kept a sharp eye out for our car as we searched for him. Sometimes we would catch a glimpse of an orange head peering around a far corner. As you would expect, he had always vanished by the time we got there.
At one time, Jim invaded the pitch at a local football match – an important fixture for the home team. Play was halted as the fearless Viszla chased both the ball and various players.
We were never surprised upon receiving a call from the local police station, where Jim became a well known
felon visitor. Sheepishly we collected our errant family member, always promising to be more vigilant in future.
Most of the time, Jim would get bored and wait for us in his favourite park. He always stood, semi hidden, in some shrubs at the edge of the green, and silently submitted to being put back on the leash. As we drove back home he usually just fell asleep on the back seat.
Beth – Bethany of Bethesden – a female Hungarian Viszla
After Jim sadly passed away, Beth, our second Viszla, presented us with a very different personality. Loving and motherly, Beth never took herself away on adventures, but instead kept an eye on our family. She was far more of a guard dog than Jim and would always growl through the letterbox when a stranger came to our front door.
Despite her protective motherly ways, Beth never gave up being a lapdog. We all, especially my husband, endured the pain of a large bony dog clambering up and awkwardly settling herself across our laps. She would lie there, cutting of the circulation in your legs, for as long as you could endure it.
Strangely, Beth also loved the same park as Jim, and spookily liked to play around the shrubs where Jim used to hide. After many joyful years, both Viszlas’ ashes were scattered here. My husband and I still sometimes visit the park and like to think that our beloved pets are still there, waiting for us.
Lily – the Blond Bombshell or the Disco Diva – a female Golden Retriever
A cross between a force of nature and a ditzy Hollywood blond, Lily, the golden retriever really kept us on our toes – or our backs if we lost our balance. Extremely friendly and always happy, she would almost bowl you over as she excitedly raced over to greet you at the front door.
More than any of our previous dogs, Lily would meet and greet anyone who passed by as we walked along the promenade. Her happy go lucky nature was infectious and she demanded and always enjoyed a lot of attention. Perhaps her favourite place was the beach, where she would splash through the surf and launch herself into any large puddles she could find. In fact, she got so mucky that we often returned home to a battle in the shower.
Lily spent many hours watching me write my latest greatest novels. I like to think she she was impressed by my ‘stream of consciousness’ writing style as I rapidly typed away, but it was probably the dog treats I kept in the drawer below.
Like her predecessors, Lily found her way into my stories. In the novel ‘The Wounded Therapist’ – part of the Doctors In Love 2 boxed set – Lily has a prominent role and even has a love interest of her own. Now that Lily has also gone, that particular book holds a special place in my heart.
So, now we have Lucy. Whilst I type away on my PC keyboard, she sits close by on the sofa. Sometimes she ignores me, but there are many times where I get the uncanny feeling that she is taking a real interest in my work. … and I’m sure the two of us have many surprising moments and adventures both real and written ahead of us.
I hope you liked these brief glimpses of my canine pals. However, I am often asked whether I might get a cat instead. Well, we’ve had cats before and, knowing their dark ways, I’m sure it would find a way to delete my precious files while I go to the loo.
Please visit my website, where you can find information on my many books and a few slideshow galleries of my artwork. Love, Katy