Tag Archives: rescue dog

Furbaby Friday with Karen Whiddon

I’m delighted to have Karen Whiddon here to share her love of boxers and the fine work she does for these wonderful dogs, and a book dear to her heart, The Texas Soldier’s Son (Romantic Suspense).

Karen: I was thrilled when asked to post about a beloved furbaby. Rescuing dogs is my passion and I’ve volunteered for years with Legacy Boxer Rescue here in north Texas. Over the years, I’ve fostered and adopted and currently have a full house – four personal Boxers (two foster-failures) and one foster who is currently considered a Keeper due to a medical condition.

So which one to talk about? I love them all in different ways. But the more I thought about it, the more I wanted to discuss my first foster dog, Katniss.

Katniss was brought into the shelter on the edge of death. Severely emaciated, she was anemic and covered in ticks. Her age was estimated at 4-6 years. When I stepped up to foster her, she was immediately taken from the shelter to the rescue’s vet. In addition to this, she had erlichia. My husband and I picked off over one hundred ticks off this girl. The vet said she was so anemic that if we let her run, her heart could stop, so she had to be crated. After a warm bath, we put her on a regimen of four meals a day and medicine.

Despite all she’d gone through, she still wagged her tail and was friendly. As she gained weight and her anemia cleared up, I rejoiced when she did her first Boxer zoom around the back yard. She got along with all my dogs except my grump old male Macadoo. The two of them got into several dog fights, so I ended up keeping them separated.

Katniss was adopted 7 months after I got her in April of 2013, but the adopter returned her in ten days because his vet learned she had kidney failure. Which explained the constant drinking of water and the fact that I had to take her out in the middle of the night every single night. I took her back, and she was put on prescription food and fish oil. This was in November of 2013.

In May of 2014, I took Katniss on a Home Visit for a potential adopter. The man (a single father) fell in love with her. Even the fact that she had kidney failure didn’t deter him. He took her to his own vet and had her checked out and then adopted her. She thrived there. I kept in touch and received many photos over the years.

However in October of 2017, her adoptive father called me. He was at the vet with Katniss and her kidney failure had won. She’d stopped eating and drinking and the vet had run tests and the time had come to help her to the Rainbow Bridge. He asked if I would like to be there – and said he didn’t think he could do this alone.

She remembered me. Despite her clear weakness, she wiggled her tail and kissed me. I was honored to stand with her dad as the vet helped her peacefully pass.

For me, Katniss will always signify all that is good about rescue. I still miss her, her dad does too, but she had 4 more years of a good life, being loved, than she would have. And in March of 2018, I found another dog for Katniss’s dad to love. A boy this time. The adoption is finalized and another dog will know a loving home.

Katniss’s pic and story can be read here: http://www.savetheboxers.com/beforeandafter2.php?dogID=3076

I have a book coming out in May called The Texas Soldier’s Son (Harlequin Romantic Suspense) To quote from my Dear Reader letter in the beginning of the book:

As a writer, every now and then it feels like a story is given as a gift from the cosmos. The Texas Soldier’s Son is one of these books. Writing it felt like telling the story of good friends, maybe even family. I was there with them, just recounting what happened. Moved to tears with them, frightened for them, rejoicing with them, and falling in love just as they did.

From the back cover blurb: “Jacob is your son.” A thrilling new Top Secret Deliveries story. Army Ranger Kyle Benning never expected to live again… or have a family. When he was believed dead in an explosion, Nicole Shelton gave birth to Kyle’s baby. Now she’s someone else’s widow and a prime suspect in a murder case! Everything Kyle once knew is a dangerous as a war zone, but he battles trauma and a killer to rescue the woman he loves.

Excerpt from The Texas Soldier’s Son:

No matter. He’d be setting things straight soon.
The 2013 Chevy Silverado he drove had been one of his lone expenditures. He’d paid cash for the used pickup, knowing he’d need something reliable for the drive west to Anniversary. Excitement jumped inside him, drowning out some of the ever-present anxiety. Excitement and, dare he say, joy. Because soon, he’d be with Nicole. He couldn’t wait to see her face when he knocked on her door, to pull her into his arms and breathe the fresh strawberry scent of her shampoo, to kiss her lips until they both felt as if they were drowning.
In his pocket, he had the only other thing he’d spent part of his savings on. An engagement ring. As soon as he and Nicole got caught up, he planned to get down on bended knee and ask her formally to be his wife.
They’d talked about marrying before he’d signed up for the army. He’d even given her his high school class ring as a token, proof that he was hers and vice versa. She’d taken to wearing it with a long chain around her neck, safely tucked under her shirt so her strict parents wouldn’t see.
God, he loved her. As his truck ate up the miles, he amused himself with imagining several different scenarios when they saw each other for the first time in over a year. His favorite was the one where she hopped into his truck, they drove out to the lake and made love right there in the cab.
Finally, he crossed from Louisiana into Texas. Not too much farther now. The hum of his tires on the asphalt soothed him and he felt more relaxed than he had since the explosion.
When the Anniversary city limits sign came into view, dusk had settled over the sky. The sunset colored the sky pink and orange, promising another hot East Texas day tomorrow. He remembered how everyone liked to complain about the summer heat. It would be a cakewalk compared to the temperatures in Kabul.
Instead of heading toward the small frame home he’d rented via the internet for the next six months, he drove directly to Nicole’s parents’ house, praying she’d be home. Parking out front, he jogged up the sidewalk, his heart pounding in his chest, and rang the bell.
A moment later, the door opened. Nicole’s mother stared at him, frowning. “What are you doing here?” she asked, the rancor in her voice startling.
“I’ve been discharged from the hospital, ma’am,” he said, figuring he’d kill her with kindness. “If you don’t mind, I’d really like to see Nicole.”
“Nicole?” She recoiled as violently as if he’d struck her. “Nicole doesn’t live here. She’s over on Broad Street in the house she shared with her husband and son.” A slow, malicious smile spread across her face. “Bill Mabry? I’m thinking you might remember him?”
He hadn’t gotten much past the words husband and son. When he finally caught up, the name Bill Mabry made his stomach churn. That had been the same guy her parents had tried to force her to marry when he and Nicole had been together.
“Well?” The older woman stared, her gaze hard. “Is there anything else that I can help you with?”
For a moment he couldn’t speak, couldn’t force the words out past the huge lump in his throat. Only when she’d started to close the huge oak door in his face did he think of the one other thing he needed to know. “Did Nicole even mourn me at all?”
“Of course not,” she said smoothly, without missing a beat. “Once the army notified your foster family of your death, she’d moved on. She was already married with a newborn by then. I didn’t want to disrupt her life.”
And then she waited, eying him with a certain mocking relish, waiting for him to reveal how devastating he found her answer. He refused to give her the pleasure.
Though his head spun, he turned on his heel, the military precision of the movement kicking in by instinctive habit. Somehow, he made it to his truck, unlocked the doors and slid inside. Turning the key, he started the engine, put the shifter into Drive and pulled away.
He started to head to the park by the lake, the same secluded place he’d intended to take Nicole, but instead he found himself heading toward Broad Street. He still couldn’t believe her mother’s words, couldn’t accept that she hadn’t waited barely any time at all before getting married and pregnant. For her to have a newborn, that meant she’d jumped into bed with this Bill Mabry guy right after getting the erroneous news of Kyle’s demise.
Had he truly meant that little to her?

Get The Texas Soldier’s Son in Kindle at: https://www.amazon.com/Texas-Soldiers-Son-Secret-Deliveries-ebook/dp/B075XYJDHW/

Award winning author Karen Whiddon spun fanciful tales for her younger brothers as early as the age of eleven.  Growing up in the Catskill Mountains of New York, then the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, she found enough magic in the rugged peaks to keep her imagination fueled for years.

Now making her home in North Texas, she shares her life with her hero-like husband and five doting dogs.  In her spare time she volunteers for Legacy Boxer Rescue, Inc.  She has published around 45 books.  Currently she writes for Harlequin Romantic Suspense and Harlequin Nocturne.

You can email Karen at KWhiddon1@aol.

Thanks for stopping by! Please leave Karen a comment.

Furbaby Friday with Julie Lence

I’m happy to welcome Julie Lence to the blog to share her wonderful rescue dog, Nova, and her western historical romance No Luck At All.

Hi Beth. Thank you for having me as your guest today. To give your readers a little background about me, I’m a stay-at-home mom enjoying a career writing western historical romance. I’ve been married to my high school sweetheart for 34 years and we have one son who is now in college. Ever since I was young, I have always loved animals. Dogs and horses are my favorites. While I don’t own horses, writing western romance enables me to incorporate them into my work. As for dogs, my family had several throughout my childhood years, and the hubby and I have had 3 of our own. Our current dog, who rules the home, is a German shepherd.

Nova is a rescue dog. She came to live with us about 11 years ago. Our male shepherd had passed away, and though I swore after him I didn’t want any more pets, being alone in the house all day, I couldn’t stand the quiet. I made a call to our vet and asked him to find us another shepherd. He telephoned back about a week later stating he had found 2 shepherds. One was a male who was very high strung and most likely a pet I wouldn’t be able to handle. Nova, on the other hand, was a sweetheart and desperately in need of a home before she was sent back to the shelter. Excited, the kiddo and I went to see her at the vet’s office. She was quite a shock, as I was expecting her coloring to be all black, as our male was. Tan, with a bit of black fur, it took a moment to wrap my brain around the change, but as soon as Nova was released from her kennel, she came running to me and the kiddo, excited and happy to see us, as though she knew she belonged to us. Fifteen minutes later, she was in the car and going home with us.

That first afternoon everything was right in my world. We had a dog in the house again! Nova loved her new home and backyard. She played with the kiddo, who was about 6 at the time, and she welcomed the hubby when he came home from work. She also claimed the spot on the landing where our other shepherd liked to nap. At around 2 years old, she was gentle, house broken, friendly, and had manners. The story went she had had several owners, one of which was an army man who had been training her. He was shipped overseas and Nova stayed behind with his wife. Sadly, he was injured and sent home. His wife couldn’t take care of him and Nova, too, hence the reason Nova eventually came to live with us.

About a year after having her, Nova began to have health issues. Our vet recommended she see an internal specialist, who was fairly certain she had cancer and didn’t have long to live. I never prayed so hard in one weekend, with my stomach in knots and hiding tears from the kiddo while we waited for her test results. Those prayers were answered in that she didn’t have cancer, but a mass that could be reduced and controlled with medication. She has since been on meds, and continues to develop problems as she ages. But no matter how many curve balls life throws at her, she is a real trooper and maintains her zest for life… and treats, and potato chips, and veges and fruits, and her tennis ball.

Rescue dog Nova

Nova loves Christmas and knows her Christmas stocking. As soon as she sees me fill it Christmas Eve, she guards it until Christmas morning. She also knows Thanksgiving and gets excited when I bring the turkey into the house, usually spending Thanksgiving Day in the kitchen waiting for the bird to cook. She is smart in that she knows everyone’s routine, the sound of not only our vehicles but our neighbor’s, and that the answering machine will pick up on 4th the ring. (Actually, if I don’t answer the phone by the 2nd ring, she starts whining.) Some of the things she doesn’t like is going to the vet, even though both of them spoil her, and the Fed Ex and UPS trucks. She barks as soon as she hears them coming up the street and doesn’t stop until they’re gone. Getting a bath or playing in the sprinklers are also not favorites, but she does like to be brushed and roll in the grass. And she likes riding in the car. Her 1st summer with us, we took her to Durango, up and over several 14,000ft mountains. She was green going over the last one and I thought she was going to be sick, but she held on. She also likes going on walks, but that has come to an end as she suffers from arthritis and cannot walk too far.

Having Nova has been a blessing. She is good company for me, as I tend to talk to her as if she’s a human. Funny thing is she understands most of what I’m saying. We’ve taken her camping, on more drives in the mountains and to the park. She’s loyal and protective, barking at anyone who comes to the door, even those she knows. One of the best memories I have stems from a few years ago.

Around 4a.m., the C.O. detector went off. Hubbs tried everything to get it to shut up, but it wouldn’t. Fearing the alarm was real, we called the fire department. Kiddo and I put Nova into the car and backed out onto the street. As the fire truck pulled up, I expected her to start barking at the firemen, but she sat and calmly watched. Now when one of the smoke alarms goes off, she looks at us to see if we are leaving the house again. A second funny memory—my laundry room is upstairs. One day while the wash machine was running, it made this God-awful racket. Nova came running and met me at the door to the laundry room. We looked at the machine, she looked at me and I looked at her and we both had the same expression—what the heck? And then we walked away, deciding there was nothing we could do until the machine was done washing.

There are so many more memories, like when she snatched a hamburger off the counter, how she used to cuddle with me on the couch (she’s 85lbs.), how she chases the squirrels and birds out of the yard, that I could continue talking about her all day. She is my girl, and will continue to rule the house until she no longer can. As I mentioned above, the novels I write always include horses. I only have one story where I feature a pet, and Wiley isn’t a dog. He’s a wolf. Below is his initial meeting with Creel and Racine Weston in No Luck At All.

Excerpt from No Luck At All

Racine hurried across the yard to the springhouse. Collecting her pie, she made haste toward the back of the barn where hammers and saws could be heard. The ranch hands were steadfastly working on the bunkhouse, hoping to finish and move in by the end of the following week.
“Morning, Blade,” she called, approaching the building.
He paused from nailing trim around a window and touched his fingers to the brim of his hat. “Morning, Miz Racy. What brings you out here?”
“I’m going to town with Creel. There’s a kettle of soup on the stove for you and the others.”
“Appreciate it.” He nodded.
“There’s fresh bread, too.” She cast an uneasy glance toward the back of the house. “Blade, will you do me a favor?” She brought her gaze back to him.
“If I can.”
“Can you find Lucas or Royce and let one of them know I’ll be in town all day? Please? They’ll understand the message,” she added at his strained look.
“They ain’t gonna be happy to hear they’re not getting pan toast today.”
“You know?”
“‘Course, I know. We all do. Ain’t nothing those boys do we ranch hands don’t know about.”
“Then why the look just now?”
“‘Cause the others and me ain’t gonna get a good laugh today watching those two sneaking around the trees.”
“Oh?” She smiled. Then a thought struck. “Do Paige and Missy know?”
“I doubt it. They’d have taken those two to task for coming over here and botherin’ you, and nobody’s heard any yelling, that I know of.”
Racine sighed in relief. “Thank goodness. Creel found out yesterday and wasn’t happy. He bade them to eat at their own homes.”
Blade shook his head, tiredly. “You’d think by now he’d have learned his brothers will do anything they can to rile him. They don’t do it outta meanness. They do it–”
A sharp wail split the air.
“What in all creation…?” Racine’s heart hammered beneath her breast.
“Wolf! Only he don’t sound too good.” Blade grabbed her arm and set her back against the bunkhouse. “You stay here.” He took off for the edge of the woods, as fast as his injured leg would carry him.
The horses in the corral began to whinny. Racine drew a sharp breath. From the corner of her eye, she saw Davey and Joe drop their tools and run.
“The heck I will,” she murmured, lifting her skirts the same time a door slammed. She guessed Creel had heard and come to investigate, but she didn’t take the time to find out. She ran after the men, and nearly skidded in her tracks when she came to a halt beside Blade.
“Mother of Mercy,” she panted in awe. Standing between two thick trees, blood dripping from his heaving side, drool dangling at the corner of his mouth, a big, gray wolf stared at them, pain in his eyes.
Racine made to step forward only Blade grabbed her arm.
“He’s got company.” He pointed to something blocking the wolf’s path—a rattlesnake, tail sticking up and hissing.
“Sonofabitch!” Creel grasped her other arm. “Go back to the house and–”
“He’s bleeding, Creel.” Racine grabbed his upper arms, imploring, “You’ve got to help him. Please?”
No sooner were her words out then a knife sailed through the air and pinned the snake’s head to the ground. Racine whirled in the direction from which the knife had come and saw Davey jab Joe in the shoulder. “Got it!”
Jerking her attention back to the wolf, she locked her gaze with his and spoke in a soft voice. “It’s all right, boy. No one’s going to hurt you.” To Creel, she said, “How in heavens did Davey do that?” and saw the wolf’s ears prick to the sound of her voice.
“He’s good with knives is all you need to know,” Creel whispered back.
Racine nodded. She’d question him later and wouldn’t allow him to be so evasive, but right now the wolf needed help. “Easy, boy.” She took a cautious step forward, and then another, her basket banging against her hip. The wolf growled a warning.
Ahh, an idea came to her.
“Racine!” Creel hissed.
“Shush,” she whispered. “We have to help him.” She knelt down, slipped the basket off her arm and opened it. Withdrawing the pie, she held it out so the wolf could see and sniff it.
Holding her breath, she waited patiently, hearing the sounds of guns being cocked behind her. Please Lord, don’t let them shoot the wolf, she prayed.
The hair on animal’s neck rose. He growled low and pawed the remains of the snake.
“C’mon boy, come get the pie,” she coaxed. “You don’t want that snake. He tried to bite you.”
The wolf’s ears pricked again. He looked at her and growled louder.
“C’mon boy, you can do it.” She shoved the pie closer toward him. “Come here and get a piece.”
Creel hissed another warning to her. She shushed him a second time and extended the pie even farther. “I know you’re hungry,” she pressed
Then the unbelievable happened.
The wolf dropped down on the dry, brittle leaves and whined, pitifully and painfully.
Keeping her gaze on him, Racine sucked in a breath and slowly crawled forward on her knees.
The wolf panted heavily. Spittle dripped from his mouth and he whined again.
Finally, after a long, heart-stopping minute, she was inches from him, and cautiously set the pie beneath his nose. He eyed it, then her, and then began to gobble it as if he hadn’t eaten in weeks.
“Get me more food,” she whispered to Creel. She heard him curse under his breath before he ran toward the house.
“It’s good, huh?” She smiled and reached a tentative hand forward. While he licked the plate, she touched his head with her fingers.
He lifted his eyes and growled again, but it wasn’t one of conviction.
“Don’t bite the hand feeding you,” she instructed. “You want more, you be nice.” And again, he surprised her. He actually let her pet his head. “Good boy.”
“I ain’t never seen nothin’ like it.” Davey expelled a long, astounded breath. “He’s lettin’ her pet ’em.”
“How’d you do that, Miz Racy?” Joe wanted to know.
She shrugged. “I don’t know.”
“Wolves aren’t known to take to humans,” Blade said. “He senses something good in you.”
“He likes my cooking, same as all the men on this ranch,” she said softly before taking in the extent of the wolf’s wounds. “He’s got a long gash on his side. And plenty of scratches to go with it.”
“Must have gotten into a fight with another animal.” Blade sheathed his gun.
“We’ll patch him up,” Creel said, halting a few feet behind her. “Soon as he eats this and falls asleep. I put some laudanum on the toast.” He passed the plate to her.
“Thank you.” She took the plate and gave it to the wolf, her hand still patting his head.
He gobbled it up and looked to her as though to ask for more.
“Later,” she said softly. “Right now you need to sleep so I can help you.”
“Soon as he’s out, we’ll move him to the barn,” Creel said. “Be easier to treat him in there.”
She nodded and continued to stroke his mangy fur. “He needs a bath, and a good brushing.”
“Don’t think you’re gonna keep him, darlin’. He’s wild and could take a notion to lunge for your pretty little neck at any time.”
“He won’t,” she said matter-of-factly, and was rewarded a short time later when the wolf fell asleep to her hand caressing his ears.
She stood up and moved out of the way while Creel lifted him and carried him toward the barn.
“Put him in one of the stalls,” she instructed, “while I heat some water. And be careful.”
“Yes, ma’am.” Creel grinned.
“Blade,” she called, mounting the porch steps, “please find me a brush. I want to get the snarls out of his fur.”
“Yes, Miz Racy.”
“Thank you,” she said and hurried inside.

Julie Lence

No Luck At All is available at Amazon: www.amazon.com/dp/B0064R6NVI
Thank you for taking the time to read about Nova. If you would like to connect with me, I can be reached here:
Website: www.julielence.com
Facebook page: https://facebook.com/#!/JulieLence
Twitter: https://twitter.com/julielence

Thanks for stopping by. Please leave Julie a message!

A Moving Furbaby Friday with Author Daphne Dubois

I am welcoming fellow Wild Rose Press Author Daphne Dubois to Furbaby Friday to share and remember her wonderful rescue dog, Cody. She is also sharing her debut contemporary romance, The Right Fit.

Daphne: Cody, our lovable and loyal cocker spaniel, died yesterday. He was twelve. We adopted Cody two and half years ago through Litters N’ Critters, a non-profit animal rescue organization.

He slipped into our family like he’d always been here. And although we were the ones who chose him, it was clear from the beginning that he owned us. And wherever we went, whether it was to the cottage or a walk in the park or the annual Father’s Day Run, he came too and it made those events more endearing.

As a senior dog, Cody wasn’t jumping over fences, but he could suddenly be full of energy whenever a neighborhood cat dared to come into the yard. He enjoyed good health until a few months ago. His last visit to the vet determined his liver was failing and he was anemic. With the help of Dr. Croft, we decided to treat him with palliative care to keep him comfortable as long as we could. 

Cody loved to nap, loved to eat, and was known for his lack of speed, so the ability to see whether or not he was unwell was a little hazy most days. Yesterday though, it became clear that the time to say goodbye had come.

Other than adopting him, it was the most important decision we could make on his behalf. Dr. Croft and the rest of the staff at Halifax Veterinary Hospital were gentle and kind. The entire process was very peaceful. We said goodbye to Cody as a family, staying with him to the end.

I’m crying as I write this and feeling a little strange as well because there are so many human tragedies in the world that deserve tears and grief. However, anyone who’s ever loved a dog can tell you it’s a special kind of loss. And Cody was a very special kind of dog. 

I want to tell you a little bit about him…  His favourite pastime was napping.



And on anyone.

He loved to eat. His favourites were apples, carrots, peppers, and as a treat, bacon! He would stand in front of the fridge, just staring, hoping it would open on its own.

He was exceptionally good at helping me proofread.

He had a great sense of humour.

He loved eating all the fruits and vegetables in the garden.

He loved playing in newly fallen snow.

Easter was his favourite time of year.

He loved the beach.

He loved visiting my parents at their home in Chester. 

Adam loved him.

Ruth loved him.

And Ken and I loved him. A whole bunch.

But no matter how much love we gave Cody, it always felt like he loved us back more. Even though we only had him in our lives for a few years we have so many wonderful memories of Cody that we’ll remember forever. We miss him and are sad that he’s gone, but we are also happy that he is at peace now.~

Beth: I’m so so sorry for your loss. Cody was the perfect dog. What wonderful memories and images. I hope you will rescue another dog someday who will help comfort you and your family.

About Daphne’s exciting new romance, The Right Fit.

Blurb: When Maxine Nicholls discovers her fiancé is cheating, she turns to fast food and nighttime soap operas, but her sister has a plan—unbridled rebound sex with a stranger. 

As one of Toronto’s hottest players, Antony Laurent tallies scores on and off the ice, but when the chiseled defense man hits a slump, rumors of a trade to the minor league send him to ambush a managers meeting at a posh club.

That night a chance encounter ends up as an unforgettable evening of passion. But Maxine and Antony are about to discover a game of casual hook ups can lead to something neither one of them thought they deserved—the right fit.

Get The Right Fit in Kindle at: https://www.amazon.com/Right-Fit-Daphne-Dubois-ebook/dp/B06WRQWLJ4

Author Bio

Daphne Dubois writes contemporary romance and believes the right book at the right time can make all the difference. When she’s not putting her characters in compromising positions (ahem), she works as a registered nurse. A member of the Writer’s Federation of Nova Scotia, she lives in Eastern Canada, the most romantic place in the world. You can also find her writing for teens as B.R. Myers.

Contacts: Website // Amazon // Goodreads // FB Author Page // Twitter // Instagram // Pinterest

Thanks for stopping by! Please leave Daphne a comment.


Furbaby Friday with Author Charlotte O’Shay

This country gal warmly welcomes fellow Wild Rose Press Author and city girl, Charlotte O’ Shay, to share her furry friends and spicy contemporary romance with a dash of suspense, A Model Engagement. (Out 9-20-2017)

(Stanley–Charlotte’s Darling  Cockapoo Rescue)

Charlotte: Thank you Beth for dreaming up FurBaby Friday.

What a great idea! Even if they’re not doing something miraculous like the golden retriever who recently pulled a fawn from the ocean, our animals are the unsung heroes of every aspect our daily lives no matter where we live.

Pets are beloved in New York City and its immediate environs but the decision to have a pet here is a serious one. Because—space. People are wise to consider the ramifications of the breed they choose or that chooses them! City dwellers live cheek by jowl and their pets must do the same.

One of our first family pets when I was a kid was a mixed breed an adorable puppy, given to my brother by his godfather. Snoopy was white haired, black-eyed terrier mix, our city kid version of the Charles Schultz cartoon dog.

Snoopy was the sweetest of dogs. We all grew up with him. Mom spoiled him with a healthy share of the same home cooked meals we enjoyed. We were lucky enough to have a small backyard behind our apartment where he could play with me and my four brothers and sister. He lived a good, long life. I don’t remember him ever being sick or ever going to the vet except for vaccinations.

(Snoopy–Beloved childhood friend)

Flash forward to college, grad school and young married life—all in the city. No pets. No time and no space.

Then we moved to the suburbs to raise our family with a gorgeous Bearded Collie we called Chance. He was perfect in every way. Hypoallergenic: my husband is allergic to cat and dog dander. And playful: Chance loved to play and run (didn’t care about eating over much) and we had the space for him to roam. He stayed puppy-like till he was 14 and only slowed down in his last year.

(Chance–Bearded Collie–age 12)

Then we moved back in the city and bringing Stanley, the adorable cockapoo we adopted seven years ago along for the adventure.

He’s also hypoallergenic but in all other ways Chance’s polar opposite. We don’t know much about Stanley’s early years and we don’t know how old he is. He came to us with a myriad of health problems and a super sweet disposition. He’s never met a discarded piece of pizza or donut he didn’t like. It’s a challenge to walk him in New York these days. He’s arthritic and his hearing is going. Although he’s definitely a country dog, he’s adapted to the city, and he’s never happier than when he is snoring by my side as I write. He only barks when my husband and I embrace and then we always try to bring him in for a group hug.

(Beth: Stanley sounds super special. Love hearing about your furbabies.)

In my upcoming release, (September 20th) A Model Engagement, fur babies play big supporting roles. My hero, Connor, has a soft spot for rescues and a house full of them. My heroine, Lacey balks at the notion that he might view her as a human rescue.

One of the many pet related scenes:

He hardly looked like a dog he was so thin. His hair was matted and covered with sand and leaves. He could hardly lift his head even though his eyes followed their movements, so he was clearly aware of their presence.

She looked up at Connor and murmured, “We’ll need something to put him on to carry him. He looks too weak to walk.”

“I’ll go back to the boat and get a blanket.” Connor turned away to do just that as Lacey sidled closer to the prone animal.

“It’s okay, little one, everything is going to be just fine,” she crooned dropping to her knees beside him. “We have you now. It’s going to be okay.”

It took them a couple of minutes to figure out how best to transport him.

“Wait with him. I’ll pull the car onto the walkway as close as I can get to him. Then we can both carry him and put him in the backseat.”

Lacey sat with the dog in the backseat while Connor drove a careful twenty-five miles per hour. The ride was a far cry from their invigorating, top down, whirlwind five-minute, fifty mile an hour trip to the marina earlier. On the way he called the twenty-four hour emergency veterinary facility. The vet agreed to meet them there and take a look at the dog.

“It never gets easier seeing what can happen to these poor animals.” Sally Vaughn ran an expert gaze over the animal.

“Who would do this?”

Story Blurb:

Lacey Reed jumps at the chance for independence with a career in the big city. But her naivety and ambition blind her to the lure of a blackmailer. With her savings gone, she has nowhere to turn when she literally runs into financier Connor Devlin.

Though dazzled by Lace y, Connor sees the desperation she tries to hide. His gut tells him to help, and he hires her as his fake fiancée. Now Lacey has a job, and Connor has put a bandage on a family crisis.

When the blackmailer ups the ante, Lacey resolves to face him down—no matter what the consequences. Does that mean Lacey will lose the only man who’s ever seen who she truly is?

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New Friend and Furbaby–Adopting a Rescue Dog

Beth Trissel with 'Gi Gi' now 'Jilly' and tiny SadieWhen we brought our new rescue dog, Jilly, home we were thinking of our sad little pom-poo, Sadie, who badly misses her longtime friend, Mia. As it turns out, Jilly is such a sweet, calming dog, she’s not only helping Sadie feel better, but also me and others in the family. She’d make a great therapy dog, and is doing just that in our home. I guess we needed her as much as she needed us. I’d prayed for the right dog and she is, though not the one we originally applied to adopt. When my mom, sister, brother, niece and I made the trip to the Petsmart store in Waynesboro on Saturday, we intended to adopt an entirely different dog. But, as a friend reminded me, dogs have a way of choosing you and that one didn’t choose me. Jilly connected with my sister, Catherine, while I tried to befriend ‘Honey’. When I realized Honey wasn’t the dog for us, Catherine said, ‘How about this one? She’s really sweet. I have a good feeling about her.’

Jilly with Colin and Cailin

Jilly is such a loving dog that some caring soul had already paid her adoption fee, so money wouldn’t stand in the way of her finding a forever home. She’d been passed over for weeks until we found her, or she found us. She curls beside me on one side of the couch and Sadie on the other. Kitty Percy even sat with me after concluding Jilly isn’t the threat he’d feared and he mistrusts any new pet, even kittens. That says a lot about her good nature.

I want to thank Augusta Dog Adoptions for the wonderful work they do in rescuing many needy dogs and helping them find forever homes. And a shout out to Petsmart for their support of dog rescue and adoption. For more on Augusta Dog Adoptions visit: http://www.augustadogadoptions.org/

Friend them on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/augustadog.adoptions

From what the rescue folk and we can tell, Jilly is part Blue Heeler, a cattle dog, and part Pit Bull, which I’ve been wary of, but am learning can be very nice dogs depending on how they’re handled, and part we’re not sure what else. If you have it in your heart to adopt a dog, you may find your new best friend.

“One reason a dog can be such a comfort when you’re feeling blue is that he doesn’t try to find out why.”  ~Author Unknown

***Images of Jilly with Sadie, Me, and niece Cailin on the sun porch and Cailin and grandson Colin with Jilly in the living room.