We have always had pets in our household, usually dogs with the occasional cat who wandered in and made itself at home. Growing up our dogs were usually bitzers given to us by friends or rescued from the pound.
The first dog I remember was Sweetheart a black spaniel cross who had a beautiful gentle nature and was with us for ten years. She came with us everywhere. After Sweetheart passed on there was Spot (yes fairly unimaginative but that was his name before he came to us). He was with us for a year before his previous owners heath had improved and they wanted him back. Then they gave us seven guinea pigs (assuring us they were all female). Hmm, one male six females equals lots of little guinea pigs! After supplying the school and neighbourhood we separated Pepper from his harem and gave him a male friend for company. Friends came to stay with us and brought their little foxy cross, Penny. She was a gorgeous little dog who loved to be with people.
Unfortunately we then moved to Melbourne 1200km away in January and Penny stayed in Brisbane. My birthday was in April and Dad had been in Brisbane on a trip and he got home late that night. There was a scratching at the door and Penny was there! She had been fretting without us and her owners agreed that she could come to us. She remained with us for the next seven years until the grand age of 21.
I had always had a love of German Shepherds. Then after Penny was gone, it seemed meant to be, when after a very big thunderstorm a friend’s mother had a small lost German Shepherd puppy wander into her yard. We tried to find the owners but when that failed she came home to us. She shadowed us everywhere and that became her name, Shadow.
Shadow was the first of my German Shepherds and over the last 27 years I have been blessed with Shadow, Scamp, Misty, Tami and Shannon. Unfortunately Tami became ill and died on Australia Day this year leaving us Shannon who is 6 years going on 2. She enjoys agility training (on the walk right. She is still a puppy in many ways as she has never lost that sense of excitement, loves being with people and is firmly convinced she is a human.