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Letter to my mutts

Dear Mutts:

I know, I know, you are not mutts but splendid Labrador Retrievers with the best pedigree ever. I remember the first time I took you to our old vet. You must have been around 3 months old, and I told Chet: “Meet my mutts!” Chet looked at me puzzled and managed to say: “They are not pure Labs?” You were all protesting with tails up in the air! But you are my mutts! No offense there! I am a mutt too with some French, Scandinavian and Italian blood!

I know, before you were born, I was ready to change the face of this Earth with your birth, imagining your new families, and how they would be amazed by each of you. I had them lined up at that time. That was before you were born! And the miracle happened, and I just got crazy with my camera. Yes, George, I did make some mistakes. Not my fault if Zoe was coming so fast after you, and I thought Lola was lost in the process, and yes I did cut your umbilical cord which made my poor Lola not understanding something. She knew she had to do something that she did not do. OK, George you won! I am paying for it every minute of every day when I decide to sit down! You won’t allow me a second without you on my lap. Mea Culpa! Mea Culpa! You were my first born! There was a reason; we nicknamed you “Big Mouth”.

We were so careful not giving you names but just funny nicknames going with your personality! The second one was Zoe, aka Blondie! She still has some blonde moments now and then, meaning 24/7! But Zoe even though sometimes I wonder if Lola did not have a thing with the postman’s dog, you are the cutest one! And you do watch TV!

You don’t remember it Mutts, but we waited a long time, Deborah, Jessica, and I for the entrance into this world of his Majesty Jackson, nicknamed “Boubou!”  Sophie, my reddish girl did not wait a second to go on Lola’s tits, and of course she became “Ms. Piggy”. Max I owe you an apology too! If we had not known that day that there were 5 of you, I would have gone to bed by then, but instead I fell asleep on the floor, and Jessica was the only one to witness the arrival of “Baby” into the world! It took you two hours darn Max to grace us with your presence.

I don’t know if you remember Mutts but the first month was a dream, besides cutting your nails! Gosh you were worse than cats! But after a month, Lola decided it was time for me to help, and I thought “Gosh I better enjoy them, they will be gone in 4 more weeks.” No, I am not saying it was wishful thinking! I loved you before you even opened your eyes! I knew it was going to be hard to let you go, at least four of you were almost taken, almost…. Until everyone, one after the other decided it was not the best time to have one of you! I did try to find you new homes, I did! I built that website, put ads at our vet, but I rescued dogs before, and the one who will stay forever the dog of my life, Zeus. And I could not let you go without being 100 % sure that you would not end up like Zeus did, changing owners every year until I came into the picture.  Mutts, you also have to realize that Spring 2009 could have been named “Morons Spring”. I got them all…. The moron who wanted two of you boys after losing his three labs one winter after pouring anti-freeze into their kiddie pool, the one who wanted Miss Piggy so bad because she was tired of intelligent dogs…. What do you say to that? Wanna tell me?  I was going to forget the hunter who wanted Sophie too. Sophie was very popular, and still is! But what could I have said after he told me it would have been his second lab, he discarded the first one because she was too old to work…. Yeah, right. And I was almost going to forget the one who wanted to get a yellow lab to give as a gift to her daughter going to college? Were you on crack lady?

Engraved forever in my mind is the way you were glued to each other in your playpen when someone was coming to see you. It was like you knew that there was a risk someone was going to take one of you away, and you had that funny way of backing out up the end of the playpen and being like a huge ball of fur with 10 scared eyes, and no happy tails! You broke my heart that day…..

One more time though, I had someone for Sophie, a nice lady who had just lost her dog, and wanted  Ms. Piggy again, and I said yes… until the next day where I called her back to say no. I couldn’t let go of my smart ass Sophie, half monkey, half lab. Do you remember Sophie when you were back in your playpen, and I was turning my back 2 minutes and you had already climbed over the fence? Smart ass you were, smart ass you are! I swear I can almost hear your brain work! The day I decided that no one was leaving was just a regular day. No special recollection of it except that phone call. That lady who barked at me without even introducing herself “what are the colors of your females?”, and it takes a smart ass to know one Sophie, my answer was: “I have one with blue and green polka dots, and the other one has orange and purple ones. Any color you are interested in?” She hung up on me. No big surprise there!

Mutts, the worst thing we had to do when it was clear that you were going to be forever ours, was to pick up names. I am so picky about names, and usually one takes me a long time, five, are you kidding me? Fortunately Jessica was around and helped a lot, and that’s how that Jackson, George, Max, Sophie and Zoe became our mutts….

Some could say that with the pedigree they have between Honor who is the most amazing living being, and Lola, my born to retrieve girl, I wasted you. Do I feel guilty that you did not become champions or working dogs hunting in the fields? No, I am not guilty your Honor! How many mutts have the opportunity to stay together, and live together ever after? You stick together, you sleep together, you play together, and Lola the Mom is still the one in charge. And we are, I mean the humans, the privileged witnesses of it. And I learned more in the process that I could ever imagine, besides the fact that I am not and never will be a breeder.

This letter is to tell you Mutts that even though sometimes I can get upset with one of you or all of you on a very bad day, I am like in the Edith Piaf song: “Je ne regrette rien.”  And you don’t have to give me that worried look when someone you don’t know comes to the house. You are family. Case closed.

Dominique

 

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