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Leah's Page 3My loyal friend joined our family in December of 2003, at the approximate age of four. Her eyes drew my attention as I passed her kennel, a pleading stare that gave me pause; but when I noted her German roots, I continued on…

My mother is a German shepherd aficionado, and there was one by my side through all stages of my development. Along with images of those wonderfully patient, affable dogs, all of my childhood memories include either a vacuum cleaner or a dust mop.

But when I returned down the aisle of cages, Leah’s soulful eyes beckoned me again, and my feet stopped of their own accord.

She wagged her tail, hopeful.

When I finally turned away, I felt those eyes boring into my back.

Please. Don’t leave me.

Haunted by her eyes, I returned to the shelter for her the next day – and have never once regretted the tufts of hair floating across my floors.

Inhibited by an innate fear of, well, everything, and a tendency to submissive pee if we spoke to her above a whisper, it took the addition of Toby to help Leah blossom, and to go on to earn her AKC Canine Good Citizen certificate in 2007.


Over time, while she still harbored a healthy fear of fireworks and thunder, most of Leah’s issues had dissolved.  After fully recovering from a two-year ordeal with a torn ACL, Leah trained in K9 Nose Works for a year and a half before I retired her in 2012, after which she kept herself busy by supervising our other dogs at play and keeping our yard free from the feral cat colony that resides next door.

She stayed on to supervise Cooper’s introduction into our home, and then she remained by my side a little longer, through the holidays, before passing in my arms at the grand old age of 17, on January 1st, 2017. Her presence is greatly missed, but she lived a long and well-loved life here with us, before moving on to her final resting place.

If you’d like to read an essay I wrote about Leah, which was published in the Spring 2014 edition Modern Dog Magazine, you can do so by CLICKING HERE.

Sweet Senior