Dusty #1’s Story
With Princess now living with Mom, I eventually decided it was time to get a dog of our own. Both of the kids loved dogs and were very anxious to have one come and live with us. I also felt very “dogless” and needed more than just an occasional visit to Mom’s house to see Princess.
I checked with the local animal shelter, but they didn’t have very many puppies available. I chose to get a puppy rather than an adult dog because with small children in the house, a puppy would probably become better attached to the children. With an older dog, there is always uncertainty about their reaction to small children. This I remembered from my experiences with Jackie when I was a toddler.
One Sunday morning we checked the ads in the local newspaper. We located a puppy ad that sounded perfect. A Border Collie-mix, eight weeks old. We drove out that afternoon to check it out. I always pictured a Border Collie as a black and white dog. I was surprised to see a small, brown puppy with white markings. The kids immediately became attached to her, as did I. So she became the first dog that really belonged to us.
The first month or so with Dusty was rough. Crate training back then still wasn’t real popular, so Dusty spent her puppy days in our basement when we weren’t home and at night. We also discovered she had a viral infection of some type that made her quite sick. Almost from day one we had large vet bills to contend with, but she did get better and grew up to become a beautiful dog. She adored her family and loved and protected the kids.
Even though Dusty had the option, she decided she wanted to be an “outside” dog. We thought it might be the long hair she had just made her too warm in the house. We didn’t have air conditioning in our home for the Summer season, and in the Winter we had to keep it warmer for the kids. We did take Dusty inside when the weather was really bad, but she was always happy to get out again in the morning.
Our yard was surrounded by a high fence. Dusty never tried to get out of the yard, but the fence didn’t keep “visitors” away. We never did find out who was visiting, but Dusty blessed us with 3 litters of puppies over the years we had her. The pups were always beautiful and we were always fortunate to find good homes for them. Spaying at that time was still considered major surgery and I was a little nervous about having it done, even after my experiences with my first Ginger. Looking back, I probably should have had it done anyway, but the kids still talk about Dusty’s pretty pups that they had a hand in raising, so I guess it was a lesson in responsibility for them.
Dusty lived out her days with us and died quietly in her sleep. If reincarnation were possible, I believe Dusty’s spirit has returned to us in the body of Dusty 2. (Please see Dusty 2’s story in a future webpage). The resemblance of the two dogs is amazing. The only difference is that our current Dusty is definitely a house dog unless we are outside. She wants to be wherever we are.
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AND BAMBI’S STORY