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A word of caution to caring pet owners

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POSTED: June 26, 2007 5:07 a.m.
It was a lovely fall day when my husband and I headed out for a fun few days away from work. We planned to meet our daughter and her family on Friday evening in Helen.
On our journey, we passed through a small town in north Georgia where we saw a large sign advertising Jack Russell terriers. I asked Carl to please let’s stop and see the puppies.
His comment was that if we stopped, we would have to get one. I assured him I only wanted to look. Long story short, we selected the cutest — also the runt — of the litter, a little girl. She was white with the exception of her face and head that were shades of light and dark brown, and a circle around her docked tail.
It was love at first sight. We couldn’t wait to share our news with our grandsons. They too would be excited. Our next decision was to pick a name. You see, we have an eight-year-old mixed Jack Russell male at home. His name is Buckshot (my husband and grandson, Hunter, love to hunt). After a great deal of thought, it came to me. She would be named B.B. — just perfect.
One our way home, we stopped to pick up the newest member of our family. Hunter and Cole rode home with us so they could take turns holding our new little furry one.
Buckshot met us in our driveway and was so happy we were home. We introduced him to his baby sister. By his look, he was saying, “What is it? We don’t need it and when are you taking it back?”
 It didn’t take long for him to realize she was staying and he learned to love her as we did. He shared his water, food and toys, but was thrilled she was too small to jump into his bed. That was short lived.
In just a couple months she was taking over. They became best friends and were company to each other during the day while we were at work.
The joy of pulling into the driveway after a rough day at work and be greeted by two smiling, tail-wagging little ones will always put a smile on your face. I know not everyone appreciates the attachment one can have with his or her pet, but all I can say is they don’t know what they are missing.
As the months passed, BB quickly grew and we laughed watching her play. She loved her many toys, the sprinklers and riding on the scooter with Carl. She would stop in her tracks when she heard him start the lawn mower and was always ready to ride. She would perk up at hearing the word “squirrel,” and loved to bark and chase the wild turkeys and deer that wandered into our yard. You would have thought she was as big as they were.
This all came to an end one recent Friday evening while Carl sat out back watching her play. He suddenly heard her cry in pain and knew what had happened when she darted out of the edge of the woods. A snake had bitten her. He rushed her to the vet even though in his heart he knew it was hopeless. The look on his face when he returned home told the outcome. Our B.B. was gone.
The hurt is overwhelming. We miss her as does her big brother, Buckshot.
Please, everyone, be very careful. We live in South Georgia where it is hot, dry and snakes are on the move.
We had our B.B. spayed at six months and it took a lot of thought because we just knew she would have some cute puppies. But we had to be realistic. There are so many unwanted pets around and we are not qualified dog breeders. Remember how important it is to have your pet spayed or neutered. Give them the care, respect and love they deserve and you will be rewarded even more.
We only had our B.B. for eight short months but the joy and love she gave is forever in our hearts.

Patricia Speed
Hinesville
 

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