Thursday, September 27, 2007

my beautiful golden girl Emma Jane Louise

This is the photograph that I have pinned to the drivers side visor of the car and every morning just after we all pile in the car to make the quick trip to the beach I look at this photo and say good morning to the missing leader of our pack. We said goodbye Dec. 22 2006, 9 months ago and still it's hard for me to believe that she's gone. I moved to this little village in 1993 from Toronto to start a new job at a large gift ware manufacturer. I didn't know anyone, had just purchased my first home and my mother, thinking that I needed instant company, (which was true and I wanted desperately to finally have a dog) found Em and we picked her up the second day here. She was 14 months old and had been returned to the breeder because she had dominance/aggression issues but the breeder assured us that that was nonsense. She was a beautiful pale gentle golden and she become my constant companion, my comfort, my security, my buddy.

As the years went by I added to our family, 2 years later Jake (the boy) a 1 year old red retriever I adopted from my local shelter, he had already had 2 homes and I think he was just too much dog for the previous owners. He had been well cared for, trained and he arrived a happy, secure, wound for sound young dog. He still at nearly 13 amazes me with his nearly constant exuberant energetic personality.

In January 2000 the shelter called me and asked if I'd consider fostering a little dog that was not having an easy time at the shelter. Her name was Princess, a scraggly wiry terrier mix that was absolutely terrified of everything and the shelter was worried that she seemed on a steady decline since being there. Not to mention how impossible it is to find home for a dog that is either cowering in their little shelter or barking frantically at anyone who came near her. I remember so clearly the day I picked her up ...how cute she was when I first laid eyes on her, but they had to drag her into my car - she was so terrified. It's a 40 minute drive back to my home from the shelter, she cowered in the back seat while I continued to speak to her softly telling her everything was going to be OK and she responded by throwing up – she was just so stressed out by the whole morning, they had bathed & groomed her and then dragged her into a strange car and closed the door. We just continued on our drive and we weren't at the half way point when she put her little paws on the console between the seats and stuck her head and snout into the front as if to say. "I think I trust you". Em & Jake greeted us at the door, sniffed & wagged their tales at Princess as if to say "come on in, the more the merrier". Several hours later Winnie (formerly Princess) was flinging stuffed toys around and playing. She continues to be very timid of people but she has made great progress with the women that we walk with each morning and she delights in being patted and loved by them. She loved Emma, Em was Winnie's leader & the top dog and I've noticed a huge difference since Em's been gone. I'm now the leader of Win's pack, but she's not quite as confident...Em made her feel much more secure.

Em looked after all of us and as far as we're concerned she is still there with us, each & every morning, at the beach.

Jake, Winnie Dixon & Emma Jane Louise


  1. Lovely tribute to your Emma Jane Louise. I felt/feel the same way about my buddy Barkis; he has been gone since February 1st 2005.

  2. I hopped over here from the Posie site... mostly because I am a fellow Canuck and happened to notice Nova Scotia.

    Loved your tribute to Emma....and especially love the story of Winnie... you sound like a wonderful leader of the pack. Your furry friends all look so happy on the beach...


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