Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Giving Back For My Best Friend

One of our daughters use to volunteer at a private no-kill shelter, and she told us that the animal shelters can use towels to wash the animals and small washable rugs to put in the dog's kennels to make them a little more comfortable while they wait for someone to come and take them home. We currently have three "dog-members" in our family who came from animal shelters.
One daughter has two terriers she adopted from the shelters. Both of them love a good car ride, and they fight for the window seat just like the rest of the kids in the family do.

Another daughter and son-in-law adopted a beagle-dachshund mix who manages the household and "her" people with minimum effort and a sly smile. The shelter who found her said she has a sad story about being found after several months of wandering the streets. Don't feel too sorry for her though, she's able to get everyone to feed her from their plates due to her sad story.

But before those 3 motley mutts came along, there was another pound dog in our past, a long time ago. Her name was Ginger and she was the smartest dog in the world if you ask anyone who knew her. We adopted her for the kids, but somehow she became my best friend. 

Ginger was around 2 years old when the kids and I found her indignantly stuffed into a small dog kennel and left under a table at an Adopt-A-Pup-In-The-Park function a shelter was sponsoring back in 1984. I guess the people running the pup-adoption that day didn't think anyone would want her and, in fact, all three daughters cried when I passed up a cute little Cocker Spaniel puppy and talked them into the sad little terrier-mix locked up under the table.

Ginger suffered through indignities like getting dressed up as a bride for Halloween. I use to joke my mother that Ginger was her only grandchild that had hair like her. Here's a picture of the two of them snuggled up in a rocker around 1986.

Ginger has been gone for over 20 years. I had to put her to sleep due to cancer in 1992. I'd love to adopt another pound pup, but every time I think I'm ready, I just can't do it.

So today we took a big box of our old rugs and towels out to the animal shelter in memory of Ginger. She was and always will be my best friend.


  1. Awww, that made me cry! I put my dog down in 2000 and I never seem to be quite be ready to get another. The rescue networks and shelters do amazing things for these poor animals! I did have one little smile when I saw your cute little flip back hairdo! lol ~ Maureen

  2. Ginger was the best dog ever!

  3. I really loved this post and reading about your grand-dogs!! I also really loved about Ginger and how you found one another! We all have pups that we never forget, and the sting of their loss never totally goes away. I admire you for giving such a kind donation in her memory.

  4. Oh Ping! She was the smartest, best dog! Great post.

  5. I am sure Ginger was wonderful, I know you miss her. I have a pound puppy, Brodie. I have 3 grandpuppies and 2 of them are rescue dogs. They are wonderful, that are part of the family.
    Thanks for your post

  6. fantastic shot of the pups in the car window. what a difference you have made in their lives -- and how they change us.

  7. This post is so sweet and touching.

    All of my kids are "prior owns" (rather than prior discards.) I like to think they were previously loved but each came into my life to teach me something.

    I am a yard sale addict, but I justify it by buying towels for various rescues, and litter boxes for the cats. In fact, today, I came home with a bunch of 10 cent stuffed toys for my furry best friends. Before they can take a half hour to destroy them I will spend time making them safe. Removing eyes and small parts, and keeping an eye on what each is stuffed with.

    I say they are always with us too short a time but in our hearts and memories forever.