In this past year, Cisco, Belle and Oliver have passed away. Logan, another whippet, became Kinley's younger brother.
(Photo by Deb Strong, with permission)
And so this year, we are eleven, and we all met in Deb's back yard for dinner on Tuesday. Eleven friends and a garden paw-ty.
The weather cooperated, the food was excellent, and the dogs all got along just fine as usual. None of them did too much herding of the others, and in fact I think the only herding was when Logan spotted something (I forget what - a bird? a squirrel?) in a tree and decided he'd rather be a pointer than a herder.
All the dogs are beautiful. All of them are sweet. All of them are very well loved. But I covet this one:
Ginger Snap. Wee, tiny, cute, very well behaved, Ginger Snap with the biggest personality and the most demanding little tiny bark. I was truly tempted to sneak her into my suitcase when I left at the end of the visit. I think Deb might have noticed though. After all, how can you not notice this face peering over the back of the couch as you prepare your breakfast....or lunch.....or dinner?
But I digress. Back to the party...er, pawty.
Crystal is fifteen and lives with Sharon. She is much like Oliver in her present needs and actions - deaf, visually impaired, and while she doesn't have canine cognitive disorder like Oliver did (or at least, not noticeably at the pawty), she does have his habit of being very anxious in strange environments, and of taking tumbles on uneven ground. And she is beautiful:
And very, very much loved:
Riley is Deb's dog (and Ginger Snap's canine sister) and she and Charley are so much alike. Riley is a rough collie (Lassie dog) while Charley is a border collie/rough collie cross, but when I see them together it is clear that Charley got more rough collie genes than border collie ones in both looks and temperment.
And when we add Sadie to the mix, my collie-crossed-with-who-knows-what, we get three giant commas punctuating the lawn:
(Photo by Deb Strong, with permission)Of course, from the other side, they look like typical long-nosed collies:
(Photo by Deb Strong, with permission)We sat in the garden and ate and drank and talked about - what else? - the dogs.
And once the dishes were done:
And the collies decided us humans were just a bit too strange to hang out with:
And even a whippet named Kinley admitted he can't keep pawtying all night:
We called it a day and said our goodbyes - until the next time the friends get together for a garden pawty.
Oh my goodness, I thawt they'd nevah leave! I'm exhausted!