I brought Smooch home from the St. Francis Animal Sanctuary in January 2006, when she was four months old.
One of my yellow labs had just died, and I wanted a puppy to keep me and my other elderly lab company.
Both labs had a long history of health problems, so I didn't want another pure bred
who might be predisposed to particular health issues – I was in search of a mutt.
I saw her advertised on Petfinder as a "chihuahua mix." Her shelter name was Grace. When I went to the sanctuary
to meet her, she didn't look anything like a chihuahua to me, but what did I know? I took her for a little walk,
she seemed like she would be a good match, and that was that. I brought her home.
"Grace" did not suit her one stinkin' bit, so without a name to call her, I would make a little smooching sound
to get her attention. And that's the name that stuck ... Smooch.
The picture above is the only one I have from her early days. Her ears were floppy and she was a little smaller
than she is now, but otherwise she hasn't changed much at all physically. She was quite mischievous as a youngster
and quickly learned she could open every door in the house by jumping up and pushing down on the handles.
A bunch of friends came with their horses to stay one weekend and I'll never forget
coming home with them from a ride to find my dirty laundry scattered all over the front yard.
That's when I learned Smooch knew how to open doors.
Anyway, she settled into her role as ranch security early on and does a mighty fine job.
I can't begin to tell you how safe I feel living here, knowing she'll tell me
whenever something's going on that I need to know about.
I had her DNA tested and learned she is 25% Chinese Shar-Pei, 25% Australian Cattle Dog (red heeler),
and 50% unknown origin. In other words, she is a mutt.
Laura S. asked what kind of food I feed Smooch. She gets one cup of Pedigree dry food twice a day,
plus the remains of every container of yogurt I eat, an occasional Alpo Snap...
...plus whatever she digs up, which is usually nothing, but my oh my does she enjoy trying.