I'd been watching a website called PetFinder.org (I recommend this site highly, you type in your zip and it gives a list of available animals at participating shelters in your area) and other rescue/shelter sites because Stormy (our then 6 month old spayed Lab X puppy) REEEALLLY needed a buddy. She just had so much energy and I couldn't play with her the way another dog could. We took Stormy to a friend's on New Year's 2001 and she had a BLAST playing with their Golden Retriever. So in mid January 2001 I found a Golden cross male on the web, at the Spalding County HS, about 60 miles away. The following
Wednesday was to be his last day before he got put down. I tried to talk Jim into taking off work and going with me to look at him, but
he really didn't want another dog. It ate at me all weekend. So I decided to
go by myself. I rarely drive that far alone (and I got lost getting there, luckily I figured it out pretty quickly) but I got there OK. The Golden
I had come to see was quiet and very distant. He wagged his tail but didn't seem too terribly interested in me. With his history (intact, older male that had been found roaming) I thought I might be getting in over my head. He probably had
been living a hard life.
As I'd been walking the kennels, I had noticed
a cute little male black Lab X puppy, about 2 months old, who was just as friendly as could be - licking my fingers, standing quietly for scritchies. I asked to take him out and we went for a walk outside alone. He just was so adorable, walking along on the leash very nicely and looking up into my face and wagging his tail. I was sunk. But at the same time I felt horrible as it was the Golden's last day. I met a very nice rescue person there (PetOrphans, they have a website too, PetOrphans.com) and she advised me to go with my gut.
I was totally unprepared to take home a puppy (no crate or leash with me), as on the website they said
that a shelter person would take the dog to the vet for you (to be spayed or neutered) and you pick it up at the vet. But they told me he was too young
to neuter yet. So it was either drive home with him in the truck with me, or pay to board him until I could drive BACK down there and get him.
Well, you can guess what I decided.
So off we went. Poor puppy cried about 2/3rds of the way home but conked out the last stretch of the way, in Jackson GA, where I told him "we're in Jackson now, almost home now buddy, hang in there". So his name came to me- Jackson.
Stormy adored him. He is quite the pet- very mellow compared to Stormy's perpetual motion- and he learns quickly. Within a week he knew come, sit, down, wait, and gimme
your paw! He has completely charmed us. He will get on our laps or on the couch
and sit there very regally, almost in a trance as he is petted, head thrown
back, ears flopping and nose pointing at the sky. He looks for all the world
like that scene in "Titanic"- you know, "I'm king of the world!"
And the Golden I felt so worried about getting put down, who was the dog who drove me to go all that way by myself? Well I checked the HS's website again a few days later, and he WAS NOT EUTHANIZED- he was adopted AT THE LAST MOMENT! A happy ending all the way around :-).
Here is Jackson a few days after coming home. Who could resist that face? January 2001.
Puppy pile! Jackson and Stormy. Jackson is on top. January 2001.
Jackson retrieving a stick. He looks quite pleased with himself, doesn't he? January 2001.
Jackson and Stormy with The Big Stick. Stormy scavenged this from some tree trimming Jim was doing. It was a bit big for me to throw for them, so they just carted it around the field together. January 2001.
"Those sure are some BIG dogs!" Jackson in March 2001, four months old, with Boy and Mera.
Here is my handsome little buddy, March 2001, four months old.
Here is Jackson with my friend Stephanie Annee's Saluki puppy, Liza (she's about 6 months old here), May 2001.
Staying cool in the pool! July 2001. Jackson is 8 months old here.
Such a handsome dog! August 2001, nine months old.
A favorite position. Our couch is not this faded- I had to lighten the photo so you could see him. Taking pictures of black dogs, especially indoors, is not easy!
Jim's home!!! Jackson, left, with Stormy. March 2002.
Jackson with our pretty tulips, April 2003.
May 2008. Still likes to play with sticks once in awhile!
March 2, 2009- Georgia had snow- a LOT of it (well for us any way :-)). We got between 4 and 5 inches- our last
significant snowfall was in 2002 and I think this one beat it! Jackson did not enjoy the snow as much as Stormy did but he humored me for a few shots any way :-)
1/10/11- We do get snow in Georgia from time to time. We actually had some on Christmas this year- the first time since 18-something. Generally snow isn't a
problem by itself, but we had freezing rain on top of the 4 inches of snow we got
the night before. Three days later and we still had ice on the ground. No one went to work
all week- and we didn't get mail for three days! Here's Jim and Jackson playing on the
August 8, 2011- We fenced off our apple trees in the front yard in an attempt to stop the dogs
from eating so many. Well, that worked for one out of the three dogs ;-) Jackson and Sophie will help themselves to the all-you-can-eat apple feast by jumping the fence!
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