Man’s Best Friend

08 Sep
My beautiful picture

Old Mike 1974

Several weeks ago I blogged about camping without a dog. Hubby and I were feeling the lack. We’ve had dogs since the 2nd year of our *mumble*-year marriage. They’ve always been an important part of our family. Most of the dogs we’ve had have been rescues.

But a part of me really wanted an Irish Setter. As a kid, my first dog was an Irish Setter named Mike. He came to us when his previous owners couldn’t housebreak him. Mike and I were the same age. We grew up together. A couple of years before he passed on, we bought another Irish Setter we named Lucky O’Shaughnessy – Shaun, for short. These two dogs were both my friends and my mentors growing up. Kids can learn a lot from a good dog. Or two.



My beautiful picture

Pegg and Shaun 1974

The price of Irish Setter puppies these days, if you can find one, is staggering. A pup was going to cost me more than I paid for my horse! I was – quite honestly – flabbergasted. It’s not that I don’t value a good dog. I doubt anyone values them any more than I do. But we still have to live in the real world.

2014, 09-08 Murphy in his blue comfy bed

Murphy 2014

That world is full of shelter dogs who need homes. Most of these dogs are owner-surrendered animals. They may be a casualty of divorce, or a move, or of being claimed by people who were ill-prepared to care for them. The dogs haven’t done anything wrong – the people have. We have never had a bad experience with a rescue dog.

On my third trip to the Huron Humane Society – a private no-kill shelter not associated with HSUS – I found our next dog. While I had in mind something like a beagle mix about a year or two old, the dog who captured my heart was only 5 months old and a mutt among mutts.

Meet Murphy. No, he’s nothing like an Irish Setter. But he’s got a great Irish name!

~ Pegg Thomas


Posted by on September 8, 2014 in Pegg Thomas


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5 responses to “Man’s Best Friend

  1. Jericha Kingston

    September 8, 2014 at 7:47 am

    Hi, Murphy! You’re a handsome boy. I love my shelter dog, too! We’ve had him 12 years. He’s so faithful.


  2. Robin Patchen

    September 8, 2014 at 9:06 am

    He’s a cutie. How’s the house training going?


    • Pegg Thomas

      September 8, 2014 at 12:18 pm

      He’s fully house-trained already. We only use the crate when we’re gone because he wants to play with the 13-year old house cat. Who is not amused. At. All. The crate keeps the peace when we’re not here to referee.


  3. Zoe M. McCarthy

    September 8, 2014 at 11:08 am

    Cute. My daughter-in-law gets a yen for a pet and goes to the shelter. She’s always looking for the one no one else will want. She’s had a one-eyed cat and now has a three-legged dog.


    • Pegg Thomas

      September 9, 2014 at 6:59 am

      We get our barn cats from the shelter too, Zoe. I always ask them for the cats that aren’t adoptable for whatever reason. Our current barn cat was returned to the shelter because she was terrible in the house. But she’s a GREAT barn cat! Very friendly, good mouser, and endlessly entertaining. 🙂

      Murphy was born at the shelter and adopted out to a family that returned him because he was “too hyper” for them. Some people just shouldn’t own dogs.



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