“What breed did you
say?” Maxine had no idea what the woman had just said. She asked her to
Lorene was obliging.
“They are King Charles Cavalier Spaniels.”
what?” Maxine was still dense. “Wait a minute? Let me get a pencil. Now
tell me again?”
Cavalier Spaniels.” Lorene was ever the woman with a nurse's personality.
She patiently repeated herself.
Maxine stood looking
at the three puppies who were nothing more than little balls of soft
People pay five
hundred dollars a piece for these and you are giving them to me?” Maxine
was just a little suspicious.
“Well, it's like
this.” Lorene was known to have a quiet wit. “It is like this. I'm
really not in the dog business anymore. I didn't think my old male dog was
going to bring me another liter, but as you see here they are.”
So it was Maxine's
family became heir to three dogs originally bred for Prince Charles, she
was told. It didn't matter that their's wasn't exactly the environment for
the royal animals. One by one there were such comments made to make the
woman know her thinking wasn't too far off.
“Aw shucks! Those
there ain't country dogs. Them are lady's lap dogs.” One of her neighbors
laughed when he saw them.
“What good are they
anyway?” Someone else was honest with their opinion.
“For heaven's sake!
Whatever are you going to do with them? They will be so much work. Just
keeping them groomed will be a chore.” Another one of her friends wanted
to know how she was going to manage.
The kid's have
already named the dogs. I guess we are stuck with them. It was either me
or the pound. I couldn't stand to see these well bred little animals
wasted.” Maxine tried to be diplomatic and not insulted with folk's
opinion of her station in life. She knew she was forever burdened with
chores. Somehow they would find a place for the defenseless tiny puppies.
It wasn't easy to
make the small dogs comfortable in the outdoors. Fortunately Maxine's
husband was a genius at engineering anything. What was difficult about
providing for dogs? He built a dog house just big enough for them where
they could curl up together for warmth in the winter. It had a heavy
rubber flap on the door to close it off. The dog house was insulated to
the maximum. He even had a structure over and around the doghouse creating
a dead air space where a large lamp could be placed in the winter time.
The doghouse itself had a solid board fence around it so the winter winds
would be stopped. Of course, the puppies were raised at first in the
house. By the time they were grown their outdoor amenities were ready for
So went the growth
of the animals. All the jokes, jibes and taunts about the well bred, out
of place Spaniels were simply ignored. The children loved them and played
endlessly with the gentle breed that never seem to grow up. They were
oddly forever puppies with the same tie a puppy had with a person. One did
disappear. That was Rose. No one knew what had happened to her. Because
the other two would run for the cover of a bush or anything when a hawk
floated lazily overhead it always made them wonder if she had been lifted
away by one of the large birds. The close proximity to the lake where
there were giant eagles was a possibility too.
And then one day
Peaches repaid them all. The curious little dog was snooping around under
a shed at the back of the lot when all at once she was running while
crying hysterically. She sounded like a child screaming. It was a
distance from where Maxine was standing to where the dog was at the time.
daughter could go into a jittery screaming fit over something as harmless
as a June Bug. Even though she was close to the dog Maxine felt she
herself would have to run to the little dog's aid. The women didn't have a
clue for what had happened to the dog either.
With one swoop of
her hand the girl picked the dog up off the ground. She turned the little
Spaniel over, belly up, and jerked off the very large Bumble Bee.
That evening when
Maxine told her husband about the girl's bravery he smiled and said, “It
is a good thing that little dog found those things too. I hate to think
what would have happened if the baby had toddled into the bee's nest.