Meet Mr. Duke
Many men dream of going out with a supermodel. A long-legged, blond-haired, jaw-dropping, traffic-stopping, stare-inducing, beauty who won the genetic lottery.
I go out with a 120 lb. supermodel everyday, and frankly sometimes it’s a little much. Cars slow down, people stare– and it’s not me they are checking out.
What kind of dog is that?? is something we hear almost every time we leave the house. The question implies that looks like that don’t come from random dog sex, but from hundreds of years of expensive dog breeding.
Sometimes I think people ask that question not because of their curiosity about his canine heritage, but because they want us to stop so that they can admire him, hands on. Everyone wants to stroke his blond hair and run their hands along his long, lean back and graceful fawn-colored ears. It’s the same desire for luxury that makes you stroke cashmere sweaters and caress Italian sports cars.
My dog is one of the most beautiful animals in the city of Austin, and his only pedigree is the 55 dollar bill of sale from the Humane Society of Williamson County. Three years after we got him, he’s still on the flier for the shelter, and I know there aren’t two dogs like him in the world.
What does he look like? My sweetie is shaped like a German Shepard, but twice the size. He looks like Rin Tin Tin. He looks like a Belgian Malinois, but only in the right light. He has the looks and size of an Anatolian Shepard, except the ears are all wrong. He might be part Akita..and some people even think he looks like a wolf.
Alas, like many of the truly beautiful, he could care less about the attention of the masses. People stop to pet him, and he walks off in mid stroke, They stop watering their lawns to admire him, and he marks their bushes. He could care less about his public. Adulation from the great unwashed means nothing to him.
I can’t imagine if we had actually paid to have something this beautiful in our lives. I know that if, on purpose, we had purchased a, well, whatever he is, we would spend a lot of time explaining why we had made this highly impractical choice. His coat is better suited to a professional sled dog than to his real life role as a sofa based, bark-a-lounger. He sheds so much we wonder why he isn’t going bald.
As benefits a dog of his many advantages, he gives a lot back to the community. Every time someone asks where we got him, we proudly answer
“He’s a Humane Society of Williamson County rescue dog!” The usual response is a slack-jawed: “I didn’t know that you could get dogs like that at a shelter!”
So, if you are considering adding a pet to the family in the near future, try the shelter route. You just might end up with a stunner like ours. True love might be blind, but outer beauty never hurts.
|The dog in the top, right-hand corner is Mr. Duke!|