About Me

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Delta, British Columbia, Canada
I took very early retirement from teaching in '06 and did some traveling in Europe and the UK before settling down to do some private tutoring. As a voracious reader, I have many books waiting in line for me to read. Tell me I shouldn't read something, and I will. I'm a happy, optimistic person and I love to travel and through that believe that life can be a continuous learning experience. I'm looking forward to traveling more some day. I enjoy walking, cycling, water aerobics & and sports like tennis, volleyball, and fastpitch/baseball. I'm just getting into photography as a hobby and I'm enjoying learning all the bits and bobs of my digital camera. My family is everything to me and I'm delighted to be the mother of two girls and the Gramma of a boy and a girl. I may be a Gramma, but I'm at heart just a girl who wants to have fun.

Monday, April 24, 2017

P is for PETS

Welcome to ABC Wednesday! Today we are celebrating the letter P as in peppermint, paste, pickles, pollywog, and plentyPlus, I'm sure many of you have pets or have had pets at some time in your lives.  Maybe it's a cat, maybe it's a dog, maybe it's a fish or a turtle or a lizard or some other weird creature. Maybe you have more than one or a combination of cat + dog or dog + fish or hamster + whatever.  Any way you look at it, though,owning a pet definitely can change your life.

When I was a child, we had Mitzi, a purebred boxer that my Dad totally loved!  And when I got married, the nesting instinct set in. However, only cats were allowed where we lived and I thought it would be a great new experience. 
Unfortunately, the cat wasn't such a great pet.  I gave her a beautiful name, Velvet, because that's just how she felt when I patted her.  Velvet was good when she was a kitten, but as she got older, she got really nasty. She would want to be on your lap but when she'd had enough, she'd turned and hiss and spit at you!  She lived about 12 years and that was the only cat I've ever owned.

So back to having dogs!  We got Cassie, a purebred boxer in the early 1980s when we thought our daughters were old enough to take part in caring for a pet.  She was so sweet, but sadly had a bad heart and we had to have her put down when she was only about a year old.  Even having her for that short amount of time didn't preclude terrible feelings of grief.  But...never fear...another pet came along about 9 months later!

Star was the best dog ever!  Another purebred boxer with such a gentle nature!  She let the girls dress her up in costumes, including sunglasses and hats and pajamas and anything else that came to hand. She flew in cargo when we all moved from Vancouver to Ottawa and back in the mid to late 1980s and did really well.  Below left is Star on top playing with her sister that our friends got at the same time.

She had a wonderful life, even outliving my husband who passed away in 1992. I got her a basket and she slept in my bedroom with me from then on. She started having some problems around 1997 when she was almost 12 years old and with extreme grief, we had to say good-bye.  I'm sure she'll be waiting at the Rainbow Bridge for me when I get there. 

But then along came Robbie, a purebred cocker spaniel who decided that he was going to be the Alpha of our pack!  Um...I don't think so!  I took him for professional training and worked really hard with him to obey.  But he turned vicious, biting a friend I ran into on the street, my son-in-law, and ME - twice!  When he was 3 years old, we had to say "sayonara" to Robbie. I couldn't take a chance on him around my grandchildren, who were small at that time.

Now I have the BEST pet of all - I know some of you have seen photos of Tegan, my very first purebred English Labrador.  Here she is a couple of days after bringing her home at 11 weeks, exploring the back yard.  She sat right away when I told her to and stayed!  Now that's smart!
Oh my goodness, I knew that Star was smart, but she seems kind of dumb now compared with Tegan!  She's 4 1/2 already, and I realized recently that she's the only pet that I've had that is all mine! I don't have to share her with anyone! We have completely bonded and she is like my child (but not to any excess - she is a dog, after all) and she has learned how to behave extremely well.  The only problem she has is that she is too smart for her own good.  She thinks she can do things against the rules and she'll get away with them.  For example, if she sees other people or dogs, she'll run to them to say "Hi" and won't come back! I also have to be careful that she is never allowed off leash unless it's an area that is completely fenced in.  Here is a typical pose asking me to play Frisbee with her.
Here is my girl - so pretty, sweet, smart, and my personal confidant.  We enjoy pleasant and peaceful evenings together after busy days of perennial Frisbee fun!  And when I gaze at her dozing at my feet or on her blankie on the sofa, I have a poignant feeling she will be my last pet.
To all pet lovers, may you have a perfectly pleasant week with your beloved pets.  Take lots of photos of them because life is so short and one day, those photos will be very precious to you.


ellen b said...

Enjoyed reading the history of your pets, the good the bad and the hissers. Tegan sounds like a great furry friend. Hope you have many more happy days with her.

photowannabe said...

I'm so glad you still have Tegan. I remember reading all the adventures of her coming into your life.
Have to admit I'm not a cat fancier at all but have learned to love dogs through our "Granddogger", Snickerdoodle.

Roger Owen Green said...

I had not had a pet for 30 years, until we got cats 3 years ago

carol l mckenna said...

Wonderful post and photos of your pets ~ Tegan is a treasure and all photos are wonderful ~ thanks ~ fur persons are very special especially if they are well socialized ~

Wishing you a lovely week ~ ^_^

Anonymous said...

thanks for being such a good a loving companion to your pets

Trubes said...

I have enjoyed sharing Tegan's development with you from day one and she really is intelligent, we've had smart dogs. dumb dogs and one vicious dog.
The vicious dog a cross breed Alsation, (crossed with a sheepdog bad mix), One day, when the girl's were all at school, we took him to the RSPCA who would try and re-house him, but not to be with children, he really hated children. They did ask me to phone in to see what had happened to him but I didn't have the courage, so I told a white lie and said that he had gone to a couple without children; I did feel mean but there was no choice.
The finest dog we had was Victor, he was a splendid pedigree Alsation, he vas vastly intelligent and would protect the children with his life. Whenever the children went out to play in the local woods, Victor would go with them, when they came home, he escorted them home, he lived until he was fourteen, We all wept for weeks.
Now we have our beautiful cat Princess Chloe she is now our faithful and loving companion, she's nearly sixteen, and still plays like a kitten cat.
love Di, and tickles for Tegan,xx
ABCW team.xx

Melody Steenkamp said...

Oh wow Leslie.... we have something in common from our childhood... I grew up with a boxer aswell, called Alie.

And yes, pets have always surrounded me, thankfully I have never lived anywhere were they were not allowed, I would not have obeyed that rule ;-)

We have 2 large dogs and 1 cat..I am looking for more cats in shelters but the find matching pets with our dogs proves to be more difficult than I first imagined..

Pets..teach us what loyalty and pure love is, don't they

Rajesh said...

Who does not love this lovely pets.

Reader Wil said...

I love cats and should like to have two of them, but that would be difficult . I often go to Australia, where my second daughter. lives. In the past my neighbours looked after them when we were on a holiday, but they are also getting too old to look after them. and I am physically not able to take care of an animal. My arthrosis is getting worse. Well I can cope with that, but I have given up on pets.
Our cats were the sweetest friends you can imagine: they always walked with us when we went shopping, but never farther than a few streets. There they were waiting patiently for us to return.

Su-sieee! Mac said...

Maybe Velvet was like cranky people who don't know how to say thank you in a nice way.

Nora said...

Tegan is wonderful and I remember reading your blog when you first got her. It really made me want to get a puppy when I saw her photos!

Joy said...

Perfect and imperfect pets, I enjoyed the variety.