Friday, August 26, the year of our lord 2022, was National Dog Day. Of course, in my house, every day is dog day. Jason and I are outnumbered by dogs, 2:1. They also outweigh us, but not by that same ratio.
Our dogs are valued members of the family. They’re involved in pretty much everything we do, including deciding what to have for dinner and making important business decisions. Since I’ve been off Instagram, the pups haven’t been getting the spotlight they deserve. So, I thought I’d introduce them here!
The Dogs of Northen Lights Farms
Bruce (Bubba) goes first because he’s “my” dog—meaning I already had him when Jason and I met—and he may or may not be my favorite. Bruce is a Treeing Walker Coonhound/pitbull mix who’s turning 7 this year.
I’m Bruce’s fourth—and forever— human. I adopted him when he was just over one year old from an acquaintance who had rescued him from the Craigslist Free section. The people who listed him on Craigslist had adopted him from an animal shelter in Chico, California.
Because he’s 50% hound, Bruce is highly active, extremely intelligent, and easily bored. He has a strong prey drive and requires consistent exercise, attention, and mental stimulation. In short, a challenge for most first-time dog owners. But he was perfect for me!
Bruce loves long walks, playing fetch, snuggling, sniffing crotches, and rolling in foul smells. He understands limited English and never lets go of a grudge. Bruce’s favorite food is everything, and his second favorite is anything he shouldn’t eat.
Smokey (Handsome Man, Prancy Pants) is a Siberian Husky who Jason had when we met. He just turned 13 in March, earning him the title “Smokey the Teenager.” He prefers to be addressed as such. Smokey is from Clemson, South Carolina, and has strong opinions on biscuits.
Because Smokey is the senior dog of the pack, and because he’s handsome, he gets special privileges.
Smokey loves leading howl parties, accessorizing, hanging out in dark corners, snow, and freaking out.
Sampson (Sam, Booger Bear) is an Akbash Dog (yes, that’s the full name) who’s probably 11. He’s a livestock guardian dog who Jason got as a service animal for his hearing impairment. Sam’s job—for most of his life—has been to protect Jason while he’s home and alert him of “stranger danger.” (Jason spent many years living on remote cannabis farms in NorCal.)
Now, Sam is retired and spends most of his day barking at anything that moves or makes noise around our farm. Because he was never socialized, we take great pains to keep Sam away from guests. However, he gets cannabis tincture daily, which helps him mellow out. It also gives his old sore joints some relief.
Isabella (Flying Gordita, Dita, Mini Bruce) is the newest member of our fur fam. She’s Mexican. That’s all we know for sure.
Isabella rescued Jason and me on our honeymoon—a road trip through Baja California. We met her at a campground we stayed at on our way back home. The campground owner called her a stray and was super mean to her. Multiple times, he said we could take her with us when we left.
Obviously, we did. But I had some reservations. Jason and I already had three big dogs at home, and we rented a small studio cottage. That night, I dreamt we had a baby girl, and I named her Isabella. I woke up thinking this was strange because that’s not a name I ever considered for the imaginary children I’ll never have. I didn’t tell Jason about it.
When I returned to the van after showering, the stray dog was sitting on the floor, gazing lovingly into my new husband’s eyes. “I think we should name her Isabella,” he said.
I sighed. “I guess we have four dogs now.” I didn’t tell Jason about that dream until one year later when we celebrated Isabella’s gotcha day with tacos.
Isabella is estimated to be 7-9. She loves love. Give her all the snuggles and pets. She’s the sweetest, most loving dog I’ve ever met. She’s also the most street-smart dog we have. Sweet as she may be, Isabella is a skilled huntress and warrior.
She’s bilingual (Spanish, English) and only started barking two years after we adopted her. Isabella’s signature howl sounds like an old car trying to start. Arooooooo vrm vrrm vrmmm.
She completes our family.
I hope you enjoyed meeting my fur babies!