So many conversations in our house go like this :

Me: I love you honey

David: How many legs does it have, does it breathe and how many of them….

He knows me well, but the catch is -he is just as tender hearted towards animals as I am. All of our animals have a story that was a time before they came to us. Most of those stories are unimaginable and make you loathe fellow humans.

It’s easy to say that we save these animals…that we give them a place to live and food and love….but the reality is they save us.

Four of our dogs were with me through the roughest time of my life. I won’t get into too much detail but since October is Domestic Violence Awareness month, I feel it needs touching on. I got married young to someone who was initially just mentally and verbally abusive but about one week before the wedding turned physically abusive. Within 24 hours of marriage the abuse became profound. I spent many nights locking myself in the bathroom with Dixie. She was the biggest at the time and would attack him whenever he came near me…for which she received abuse. Right now she is sleeping with her head on my chest just like she did seven years ago.

The first time I tried to leave, a friend of mine barricaded me in his bedroom as my abuser called me , taunted me, saying he was using my dogs as target practice. The only word for that is evil. Thankfully he never hurt them in that way. I waited for him to go to work and loaded all of them in my car and left .

I never looked back.

I spent many nights in my car with my dogs but they were my constant.

They still are.

Now my life is beyond perfect. My dogs are sprawled out on my couch…all five of them. … I have one kitten on my head and the rest are probably sprawled out between bedrooms.

Pappy is asleep in the barn after a full day of play. We worked on ground driving today and he wore a bit for the first time!

There is just so much love that these animals can give. So please don’t ask how I can do it. Please don’t ask if I’ve met my animal quota. It’s the least I can do…because in my darkest days they were and are my refuge …the least I can do is be there refuge too.

Oh and on that note- someone dropped a kitten off tonight ! We came home from dinner and saw it in the driveway…David said : there is no way you can catch it…

Well needless to say I caught him and now he is warm and full from food and water and sleeping. We will figure it out.


*if you are reading this and are in a abusive situation please reach out. You are not alone and you CAN survive. They WILL tell you different but they are wrong.


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