Pinky’s Top 7 Most Loveable, Lick-Your-Face Mutt List


norwich terrier

Looking for love in the form of a four-legged friend?

Whether they’re wagging their tail happily, giving sloppy kisses, snuggling on the couch or sitting adoringly at your feet — dogs LOVE to LOVE you, baby. Pinky quickly learned from working with dogs that most (if not all) dogs like to give and take love. But these “mutt” breeds take the cake:

Big Breeds (just more mutt to love)

  • Weimaraner

These silver beauties always have a special place in this dog-lover’s  heart. They love to love and they’re good at letting their people know it, too.

They’re playful, smart and always full of heart. It doesn’t take long for this breed to warm up to people and they LOVE to be in the presence of the owners and families. Due to their gentle nature, they make great pets for seniors and smaller children. Weimaraner love to play and learn new tricks, but most importantly — these dogs love to love their humans. This breed is devoted and will be content to be right next to their owners, as much as is dog-gone possible.

English Yellow Labrador and American Black Lab

English Yellow Labrador and American Black Lab

  • Labrador Retriever

Oh my! I simply can’t say enough about this lovable breed. They’re great to have with children, especially older active children because these cute, furry rascals are perpetual “kids at heart”. Their energy level is matched only by the boundless amounts of love they have to give. & we’re talking BOUNDless andBOUNDing love – this breed is incredibly sweet! In Pinky’s observations, the lab “flavors” chocolate, vanilla (yellow), and licorice (black) each have their own individual quirks.

Black labs are TYPically, the most laid back and love showing off and learning tricks. Just in this girl’s experience.

Chocolate labs make excellent family dogs, they’re protective of their people and loyal — lots of energy with the chocolates, though.

Yellow labs are energetic and very sweet — many have will have a “pop-up” ornery streak that can be endearing.

ALL of the labradors I’ve come across have been very lovable. Personally,  I prefer English labradors — just because they’re more laid back, but that’s just my  preference. American field labs are a perfect match for active families who want a loving and energetic companion.

I got the pleasure of learning several new breeds while working with dogs….well, “new-to-me” breeds. Leonberger, Dogue De Bourdeux, Bouvier des Flanders, Airedale, Akita and Cane Corso are just a few of the unusual, rarely heard of breeds Pinky got the privilege to know, and most-pertinently, the Vizsla. This chick just adores this loving and gentle breed. They’re sleek and graceful, which reminds me of the Weimaraner, but a  bit calmer and maybe even gentler than the weim breed.

I fondly rememeber one Vizsla named Sasha, in particular who was very affectionate. She used to climb on my lap to give hugs. And somehow, manage to curl herself into a comfortable position in my lap, any time I would be around, in the sitting position. Vizslas are most commonly smooth-haired, but there are wire-haired versions of this gorgeous breed too. I  believe those searching for a very loving, calm and gentle (medium-size) dog would be tickled pink with a vizsla.

“New Dog Breeds” to Pinky — Have you heard of these?

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  • Newfoundland
Newfoundland

Newfoundland

I  love, LOVE, LOVE “Newfies”. They’re so endearing with their big, “dopey” looks, clumsy walk and hopelessly, cheerful demeanor. Newfoundland owners please understand this description is stated with nothing but love for the breed — they’re one of my FAVORITE breeds.

Before, anyone gets too excited, it’s important to understand — these dogs are meant for wide, open spaces and true dog lovers. They slobber and drool, they shed and they need consistent grooming. On top of that, they’re massive, which amounts to a massive amount of slobber and shedding. This is why it’s crucial to have the house and yard space for these loving beasts. Those of you who do, this girl is envious of you. These dogs are just that special. They’re so gentle and sweet and of course, very loving and devoted to their people. Newfoundlands are so loving and devoted, in fact that the breed is known for rescuing their humans in an emergency situation. They’re great pets for seniors and children as long as they’re equipped to handle these big babies with big hearts.

The smaller set (apartment-size, but loveable)

Pomeranian

Pomeranian

  • Pomeranian

My goodness, these furry little puffballs of fun are not only adorable, but they’re so loving and loyal. They might tend to be a little on the yappy side, but their happy dispositions and loving personalities can help one look past this tiny flaw. Plus, training can always benefit any dog. Yes, even a pom-pom. I  love Poms — they’re very affectionate and love to be in the presence of their owners…almost to a fault.

American Eskimo Dog

I first got the pleasure of meeting an American Eskimo dog when I went to work at the humane society in 2008. Sampson, was a 15 year-old AE who had spent much of his life inside the walls of the shelter. Sampson had a bit of a stranger-danger barking issue, but once you got past that — the little guy was an absolute love bug. He could walk, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t love to be carried outside, giving kisses all the way.

Sampson had an incredible personality, that thankfully someone saw. A man who lived several states away in Wisconsin stumbled across Sampson’s profile on Petfinder.com. He drove the entire trip and adopted the cute, little fella. The owner kept in contact with the shelter regularly (even sent pictures). He relayed information about Sampson settling in with their family, right away. He even bonded very quickly with his new sister, another older AE. Sampson lived the last year of his life happy, spoiled, and in a family where he loved and gave love. Everyone at the shelter adored this special, little dog and missed seeing his smile every day, but couldn’t be happier of the outcome.

Jetta, The Doxie

Jetta, The Doxie

  • Dachshund

Jetta, my doxie girl is one of the most loving dogs on the planet. She loves virtually everyone she meets and she is a lap-hopping, kissing fool. Dachshunds, by nature are very affectionate. They are happiest when they are surrounded by their family and the bigger the family (or the more members around), the happier they are. They love to sit on laps and are some of the best snugglers because they like to burrow in.

Prior to owning a dachshund, I was not a fan of the breed. They’re notoriously one of the more aggressive small dogs around, they’re stubborn and they’re known to bark. But when I wanted a dog, and I found out “baby Jetta” was being passed around like a holiday fruitcake (3 homes already at only 6 months old) — I knew something had to be done. I drove to meet her and it was love at first sight. Jetta greeted me with a lick on the face & that’s all she wrote. She’s been by my side, as a sweet and loving companion ever since. : )

Face-lickers and snugglers that didn’t make the list, but deserve a mention:

This is Pinky’s  list, but that doesn’t meant that there aren’t loving dogs in every breed.

And let’s not forget about mutts too — some of the biggest lovers are mixed breed mutts!

<Those searching for a particular breed can do a breed-specific search on Petfinder.com to find the perfect pet for your family..>

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Pinky Gets Back to Her Writing Roots


I took a few years’ sabbatical from writing — my first love — to work with animals, a field that I quickly discovered is also very close to my heart.

It didn’t start off very smoothly, however, I must confess.

My first day at the Madison County Humane Society left me wanting to retreat back to my trusty reference books and ever-faithful pen and paper for solace.

At least my laptop never tried to eat my face.

Reno the Senior Chow Mix

One dog, in particular was a black Chow mix named, Reno. This dog was 7 years old and had been dropped off at the shelter with his litter mates as a young puppy. He had spent his entire life at the shelter.

What we do know about their background is they had been kept in a garage by an elderly woman who didn’t know what else to do.

They had been severely under-socialized and it stuck with them into adulthood.

There were three brothers Fargo, Buck and Reno.

All of the dogs were at varying social levels, but all 3 were vicious barkers with 98% of people they came into contact with & would never let anyone get too close.

Reno

Buck, the most timid of the 3

Fargo, the most outgoing of all 3

The humane society was divided — mostly according to age and temperment:

*The big dog room

*The more active, small to medium-sized animals

*The “special needs” pets — which held animals with varying issues from newborn kittens to senior dogs to the very grumpy dogs and cats.

This was Reno’s room. This was also the room I was assigned to — to be responsible for and to clean.

Oh boy…that first day. I almost didn’t make it back after lunch.

After cleaning my area in the morning and setting up lunch for my designated dogs, it was time to bring the dogs back inside to eat.

Reno had sniffed me on the way outside, but didn’t pay me much attention earlier that morning.

In his 7 years at the shelter he had (more than) gotten used to the routine of going outside. Right at 8am. Like clockwork. Every day.

When the time came to bring him inside with a leash, he barked, growled and showed his gleaming teeth at me…as if to say, “Watch it, Pinky — stay outta my way or you’ll be sorry.” His aggressive-sounding bark was deep and intimidating, and reminded me of Cujo. &

I could just picture him rubbing his paws together and saying in a super-creepy voice, “Come here little girl..” and laughing like this, “mwahaahaaHA”.

Thankfully, something told me to stick it out and I’m soo glad it did. It was an experience, like many others, that forever changed me.

That first job at the humane society made me realize and discover my deep-seeded passion for working with animals.

After that, I worked for a handful of dog daycares, which is an entirely separate post..or posts.

Anyway, back to the jist…

Well, like I said, I went back to work after lunch (a tad bit reluctantly, I might add)…and Reno was there..waiting for me.

The shelter manager knew that this was an obstacle that had to be overcome if I was to stay on, working there for longer than a week. So she formed a plan:

We would go into his outdoor kennel with him to get him more familiar with me. I would be taking care of him on a daily basis. IF we could get past the initial scary introduction.

When we got inside, I was shocked to see that Reno appeared timid.

Even though the shelter manager and another employee were in there with me, I still felt quite sure he was going to rip my head off of my body. But as I stood there in what was HIS territory and watched him cower away, I suddenly realized how wrong I had been.

I came in, armed with treats <which, btw is the BEST way to get to know an animal and I get that, I do because I myself, am food driven, as well>.

As he drew closer, I slowly got down on my knees. Thankfully, I’d been a tall girl all of my life (I’m 6’2″). And I was already aware that my height could be intimidating to animals or small children…or anyone with a fear of tall people (whatever that phobia is called)..I digress.

I’ll never forget looking into Reno’s eyes that first time he took a treat from me. A combination of fear and utter curiosity.

At that moment, it all became clear –he didn’t want to bite me. It was fear, coming out in the only way he knew how to express it. He and his brothers had figured out a  long time ago: ‘If I bark and sound mean, people will stay away’. & it had worked for them, except when it came to finding someone to adopt them.

From that point on, Reno and I became very good friends. He always greeted me with a wagging tail, eager to give kisses and to be adored, which is exactly what I did.

I’ll never know what happened to Reno and his siblings to make them this way, but one thing I know for sure is: I will always have a friend in that big, scary dog that wound up being just a big teddy bear and one of the sweetest animals at the shelter that I still, to this day, hold very close to my heart.

Like so many other strays and homeless animals at the humane society and countless shelters across the country — these animals don’t have a voice. They can’t tell us where they’ve been or what they’ve been through. But every dog, every cat, every living, breathing thing has a story.

And this blog is a little piece of my mind to give you a look at life — my story, from my perspective.

I hope you enjoy reading — since I’m dipping my toes back in the pool of the written word after being away for such a while, any comments or suggestions would be much appreciated.

Thanks for reading — two “pinkys” up for you!

Reno and Scooby made a great pair. Love these boys =)

Skinny Scooby & Reno

Skinny Scooby & Reno

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