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God, er, Dog Is My Co-Pilot!

Came awfully, awfully close to entitling this post The New Adventures of ‘Bert and I’, but knew the reference to a DownEast Maine classic would be a tad obscure for most.

Anyways, meet the newset member of our family- Bertie!

Short for “Prince Albert Philbert”.

More below the fold; a gentle post to relax after the most incredible week personally… more about THAT later.Bertie, who has quickly become a Mamma’s Boy, is a 9 month old Shih Tzu and is easily the nicest and most polite little dog I have yet to meet. He’s also a wonderful “mostly companion” and is quite taken with the girls.

And yeah, he likes Snooky too. But he’s easily most smitten with me…

As I mentioned awhile ago, our darling pug Elizabeth (“Pincess Elizabeth Joy”) passed away after a year-long decline. Oh, it was HARD.

We adopted her in September 2001, when she was a mere 6 weeks old and small enough to fit in the palm of Snooky’s hand, knowing little about pugs other than that they are terrific with kids and that Eloise had one. Through her, we became fascinated with the breed- they are, as KatRose can attest, an extraordinary lil bunch with so much personality shoved into a little space.

Elizabeth, however, never accepted herself as a dog and in fact, was quite nervous around all dogs- even other pugs! As we have both an indoor and an outdoor cat (our equivalent of Attic and Basement Cats), she felt she herself was a cat, we think…

It was heartbreaking to witness her failing health the past year, no matter what we tried- and even harder to explain the inevitable to our younger autistic daughter Jean. I dreaded not just Elizabeth’s death for her, but what it would mean or how it could impact her future.

You see, even though we have had dogs around her all of her life (Elizabeth was preceded by Unca Claude, the gentlest and biggest red lump of a golden retriever), Jean has had a fear of dogs-  

except for her own.

I am happy (and so relieved) to report that she and Bertie immediately took to each other!

He has the sweetest disposition, no anger or grouchiness at all, and is just a happy lil guy. Big for a Shih Tzu (which suits me fine!)- and loves to ride to school every day.

He’s a bit hesitant about the noise and excitement, as the kids go rushing by our car every afternoon, but getting more used to the routine. I’ve brought him out to meet some other parents, a handful of students and some of Jean’s teachers- he is always a perfect little gentleman and gives them a gentle sniff and kiss.

Bertie is remarkably charming, polite and sweet. Perhaps the overall nicest dog I have ever known (REALLY) and hard to believe he’s still a puppy. Perhaps his one worst bad habit is playing with the laundry (clean or dirty), but that’s easily remedied.

Later today, we will say goodbye to our dear Elizabeth- even 2 months later, just thinking about her can move me to tears. I will miss her the rest of my life.

But, as they say- one door closes and another opens…  

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