As far back as I can remember, I've nearly always had a dog. My mom's Pekingese named Mingo is the first one I recall.  Especially every time I look in the mirror.  A small scar reminds me of the first lesson I learned about a dog.  Don't stick your face near a high strung, pampered pet.

But that experience didn't deter me from having dogs of my own throughout the years.  Dogs with names like Snoopy, Booger, Sebastian, Rebel, Lady, Sassy, and Fatty have been a part of my life.  The only time I think I didn't have a dog was during my college days, and that was only because they didn't allow them in the dorms or apartments I lived in.  And when I got married, I got my first "step-dog", Harmony.  Funny thing was, she didn't really bark.  But after spending time with my Sugar Pie, we couldn't stop her from barking.  OK, second lesson learned-careful what you wish for.

Sugar Pie and Harmony both lived full lives and their passings were devastating emotionally.  After all, these are members of the family.  But all these dogs in my life, male or female, small or large, all had one thing in common.  They were all pound puppies.  Not a single one was a pure breed.  And all were fantastic companions.  And I truly believe they're thankful because you rescued them and they know it.

For the past 5 years, we've had Shiloh, a border collie mix.  She's been our one and only for three years now and this weekend, we went to the Bell County Animal Shelter and left with a new member of the family, little bitty Casey.  She won't be big, but is already showing size doesn't matter, heart does.

Daddy's Girl by Peter Christian

Lesson #3  You don't own a dog.  It owns you.