We love dogs. Ours. Other people’s. All dogs. If we had the space and money (and a staff), we’d adopt one of every breed. The ones that find their way into our home and hearts are always shelter dogs or foundlings.
Ike (Beagle/Jack Russell Mix) — b. 2002
It would be a stretch to call Ike our alpha dog in any sense other than his seniority in the pack. Though Zoe often defers to him (but not always), our young Coco never quite did. Ike is a shelter mutt that Henri adopted in 2003 as a single-chick pet, but then brought into the marriage. Apparently, people are now breeding beagles with Jack Russell terriers on purpose, and calling them “jackabees.” Who knew Ike was actually a designer dog? His senior dog check up at 14.5 years reveals that he’s in amazing shape, despite a lifetime of neuroses. Ike’s favorite things are walks/hikes, eating, and napping. He worships Henri. We hope to have him around for many more years!
Zoe (Dutch Shepherd) — b. 2006
As often happens, Zoe chose Fergus when she first saw him come through the pet adoption day at PetSmart. She waited there for him for three weeks, refusing to go home with any other potential adopters, until Henri relented and said it was OK to bring her home (at the time we had another dog named Riley in addition to Ike…and Henri wasn’t too keen on becoming a 3-dog family). She and her sister had been dropped off at the shelter because they weren’t ideal for the Dutch Shepherd breed (ear issues). We think Zoe’s ears are just fine. She is devoted to Fergus to a nearly obscene degree. Our strong silent one, Zoe’s favorite things are fetching, swimming, and hiking.
Coco Nibs (Small Munsterlander) — b.2011? d. 2016
This was our foundling and our sickly pup. We came across her in a terrible blizzard. A hunting dog who was terrified of loud noises of any kind (including popcorn in the microwave), we figure she ran away from a hunt and the owner didn’t deem her fit to come after. She was malnourished but ridiculously friendly. When Fergus and our daughter Taylor stopped the car to see if she was OK, she ran over and jumped in. After many attempts to find an owner or find a home for her, we relented. She had chosen Taylor as her person and our home as hers. Unfortunately, our funny, quirky, pretty Coco suffered many health issues (becoming our most expensive free dog ever over time), and succumbed to advanced heart disease at a young age. We miss her a lot!