Dogs are special in their own way

Every dog that comes into our lives is special. And the little dog we lost in April was such a part of our lives that her death left a huge hole in our hearts.

6-25 Page 4A.inddCheetah was a five-pound Chihuahua with a huge personality. She was dearly loved and a part of all our activities. When she died, I thought I would never have another dog. And for six months, those were my feelings on the subject.

And then we visited friends who had a Chihuahua named Bullet. He is the son of Trigger, who is the son of Pistol.

He ran over and jumped into my lap and worked the magic spells of dogs. He melted my heart.

It was time to look around and consider what dog would be a good fit for our family.

The search began. Cheetah had a faulty heart valve, and I wanted a dog whose family had no history of heart problems, as her last days were not quality days.

I went online and began searching and was stunned to learn the cost of a pedigreed Chihuahua from a reputable breeder. I contacted someone who breeds champions and inquired about any available puppies who weren’t destined for the show ring but would make good pets.

She said that although she isn’t breeding puppies at this time, she knew a breeder in North Carolina who had a great line of dogs.

Contact was made, but the news wasn’t promising.

She said she had no available puppies and wouldn’t have any until next year. It was disappointing. But just two weeks later, she emailed that a nine-week-old puppy who was destined for the show circuit was deemed imperfect.

She said upon close examination, she found his lower jaw was slightly undershot, so he would be available as a pet only, not for breeding or showing. She sent a picture, and it was all over.

He’s a real tiny Tim. When I picked him up in Lexington, he bounced around the room like a rubber ball.

So now, after almost two weeks, his name is Toby. We don’t plan on telling him he has an underbite. After all, it’s barely noticeable, and we think it would damage his self-esteem. We aren’t going to tell him he didn’t make the cut for the show ring, either. Even if he was a potential champion, we wouldn’t put him on the circuit because I don’t approve of the lifestyle and wouldn’t want him exposed to show business.

His intelligence is one of his most impressive qualities. He agrees with all my opinions and loves Brian Williams presenting world news. He doesn’t approve of any form of violence and frowns on football when they tackle each other. He’s in favor of peace, love, kindness and sharing. Especially any tidbits that may come his way.

The only thing, other than political ads, that brings forth a strong negative reaction is the vacuum cleaner. He doesn’t trust it and barks fiercely at it, even when it isn’t running. He has also shown aggression when the broom or mop are placed into service, darting in and biting at them as they move back and forth across the floor. He’s a scary two-pound menace.

He’s affectionate, loving and an all-round happy little dog. I think Cheetah would be glad we’ve found another companion. He is not a replica of her, but an individual with his own personality. Her place in our affections will always remain. Toby is making his own place.