For 65 years my life has been dedicated to dogs. My homes have been shelter for the retired and the unwanted dogs. All types of breeds.
The Brindle Pit Bull, Jack's Breed
Jack, My Very First Dog
As far back as I can remember Jack was with me, he was my very first dog. This was in the 1950's.There was just something about a dog that touched my heart then, I never knew what it was or even why I was even drawned to dogs; and I still don't know. I just know that dogs are very special to me and I hold a special love for them.
I believe Jack was around way before my kindergarten days because I don't remember going to school at that time. Jack was a quiet, attentive dog with stripes. Yes, stripes! I didn't know it then but Jack's breed was a Brindle Pit Bull. I don't think my mom even knew what breed Jack was. I don't even know how she obtained him, I just know he was always there.
My mom only had two kids, me and Jack. I was the only two-legged child and it wasn't bad as what I'd heard most people say about being the only child. I was never lonely because I had Jack. He was the perfect companion, I didn't need any one else. I shared everything with Jack and we had much fun and laughter together. I could never imagine life without my Jack.
One day when Jack and I were playing, he accidentally bit me, it really hurt. I could tell he didn't mean to do it but I was was still crying. So here comes mom, "what's the matter?" I told her that Jack bit me and she said something that I never expected her to say. She said, "bite him back." I'm like what?" Mom's always right, so I bit him and now Jack was crying!
My grandmother lived down the road from us, almost blind in both eyes from diabetes. She was my mother's mother, the meanest woman I believe I had ever encountered. My mom and I was walking over to her house to make sure she'd had taken her insulin when I noticed Jack coming behind us. When we tried to send him back home, he only went through the woods. He fell in an open well out there.
I cried so much I became ill. I could hear Jack's cry's for days. I couldn't get him out, I was just a child. Everyone else was afraid to go into the woods. We didn't have a phone and I don't think anyone around in the community had one at that time. So my precious, precious Jack died.
Pete, My Next Dog - A German Shepherd
Pete, The Rescue Dog
After Jack, I didn't want another dog, it took me 20 years before I decided to get another dog. My heart just couldn't take losing another companion. I was an adult with a child before I got Pete. My child wanted a dog, I couldn't deny him the joy of having a pet. After all, he was an only child too! This was in the early 70's, a long time after the 50's! To long to be without a dog but I didn't think I could ever handle what had taken place when I was a little girl.
When my son asked if he could have a dog, I had to really think about that request. I really had never denied him anything he'd asked for but I couldn't stop thinking about Jack. So finally I decided to tell him yes, he could have a dog. I went to the Humane Society and there I saw Pete. They were going to euthanize him. No one wanted an older dog! Pete and I spent time together that day, we liked the fit and I adopted him for my son. If you notice, I said my son. I thought just maybe, I wouldn't get to attached.
He was an older dog and I had to brace myself before hand, just in case! Well, Pete had all his vaccinations and was ready to go. So now he gets to meet his little master from kindergarten. At first Pete didn't seem to like my son and didn't want him to get in the car. So, let's see how intelligent you are! I told him, "look--this is my son whom you are going to let get in this car, in a harsh tone." I was pointing my finger in his face and when I got done, he didn't growl another word.
Pete was quiet but very protective of my son. I had to lock him in another bedroom to checktize my son. He would growl at me, so I couldn't trust that, I put him up for awhile. Every day, he watch for my son to come home, most of the time he went with me to pick him up. Time passed on and they were the best of friends. Now my son is in elementary school. Pete would watch for him out the window as my son walked to and from school right by the back of our house.
By the way, we no longer live in Alabama any more but Miami, Florida. My mom had met and married a man from the area and we moved there. I was young, around 21 when I bought my first house there, the apartment life just wasn't getting it for me.To close together, busy body neighbors, all in your business and not their own. The cost of living was higher than Alabama but I did quite well for myself there. The job industry was good at that time.
Now, Pete began to get sick but I blocked out something happening to him completely out of my mind! Pete was taken to the doctor several times before the diagnosis of cancer came out of the vet's mouth. Oh no, this can't be happening! By the time we found out that Pete had cancer, it had grown to far to do anything. So his veterinarian told us that he didn't have long and it would be the best to let her put him to sleep. Ohhh Nooo! I can't let you do that. My son began to cry uncontrollable! No, just no!
It was Jack all over again, watching my son was more that I could take. I told the vet that we would take Pete home and let his last days be with his family. He finally passed and we buried him in the pet cemetery in Miami.
Tera, The Retired K-9 Police Officer
Tera, Retired From The Police Force
I don't know what the police department do with their retired k-9 police officers anywhere else in the world but in Miami, they adopt them out. After Pete died, it was a couple years before my son wanted another dog and it was a German Shepherd. So, I looked around and found out about the retired k-9's. Well, I went through all the necessaries and Tera was ours. When my son came home, Tera greeted him by smelling him. He had treats for her and that made her feel welcome, she was even tempered.
Tera was basically a quiet companion but she was all about business. Her man goal was protecting and serving! There was a kid that passed by the house everyday and used a stick to rib the holes in the chain link fence that was around the house. He would jump at Tera and she didn't do anything, she just watched him as he kept aggravating her. I was watching from the front window to see if she would do something that was not permitted. She never tried to jump the fence or even jump upon it.
At last one day! My son went to the store and didn't close the gate good, the handle was not on. Of course we didn't know it at the time until that same boy came by doing all the things he had done before, but this time Tera jumped on the gate and it came opened. Oh Lord, my heart jumped in my mouth as she bit the boy on his behind! You know what happened next right? Here comes the momma! Telling me what I'm gonna do, what I should have done and what I'm going to pay for!
I was just like Tera, I just looked at her and when she was done I went in the house, got my phone and called the police. When the police came,I explained what the boy had been doing for days, they told her that she needed to take her child to the emergency room if she wanted to and to get off my side walk.If she wanted to press charges they told her what to do. We went to court but it was thrown out. What her child had done was an invasion of privacy and harassing a fenced dog.
After this, my house was broke into one night while I was at work. My son was at my mom's house. When I came home Tera didn't meet me at the door as normal and she didn't come when I called her. Nevertheless, I went on in the house checking all rooms in the house and still couldn't find her. So the only rooms were left were the kitchen and the utility room. The back door was in that room, I could see all kinds of stuff piled up at my back door.
When I looked in the room, Tera had a mouth full of the man and held him between the hot water heater and the wall. The man was begging me to get Tera off him, I turned the light on and looked at all my stuff he had piled up at the door to take out, I went and got my phone and called the police. After the police arrived, I gave Tera the command to let him go. That night, she earned everything that she needed to earn her keep.
A few years passed by and Tera began to shake her head and I couldn't figure out why she was doing that, so I took her to the vet.Come to find out, my Tera had a tumor forming on the inside of her head the vet told us. He said it probably came from a blow to the head in the line of duty. So, we took Tera to get prepared for surgery, we were so uneasy. Well, we were told the surgery was a success and Tera got to come home after a few days.
Tera was never the same, her fight was gone, she became just a pet. It didn't matter, we lover her all the more! We got ready to move and Tera stayed with my mom's fish buddy. She loved Tera and I knew she was in good hands. My son was okay with that decision.
German Shepherd vs PitBull
The Three Last Dogs In My Care
The Many Breeds of Dogs I Have Owned
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 BODYLEVIVE