I used to work for an animation company. They created cartoons. Gorgeous squidgy characters for children to love.
When our Dalmatian, Skye, came into our lives five years ago I had no illusion that she was an animation, like the one’s we’ve all seen and adored on 101 Dalmatians. She certainly was not. She poo’d and pee’d just as much as any 8 week old puppy did. The only difference was, the night before I picked her up from her breeder she escaped with her mother. They partied all night around the farm she’d been born in. She was a wild child.
My Dalmatian was a little different.
That doesn’t mean to say that people see her that way.
I’m quite confounded by the amount of people who, having never actually met a Dalmatian in real life, tell me how stupid the breed is, that they are flighty, or skittish. The animation certainly appears to have convinced people that Dalmatian’s are nothing more than cute.
You would not believe how many times Skye has been grabbed by passersby. People fling their arms around her. Full grown women have been known to throw themselves upon my poor, long suffering dog just for a cuddle. She tolerates it with what can only be classified as animated charm. I cannot imagine how many photographs she has been in. Tourists from America, Japan, China.
She’s a rare beauty. And a highly intelligent animal.
The strangest thing is, she’s really only human…
She’s my baby, my companion, my inspiration for writing. When we walk for hours, she never leaves my side, she doesn’t interrupt my train of thought for the next scene I picture, for the words in my head, she simply is.
She’s not a cartoon, an animated character. She’s so much more. She’s totally instinctive. She senses when my daughter is about to have a migraine, she understands when I am sad, or sick. She’s far deeper than she’s given credit for. She’s a Dalmatian bred to run over one hundred miles per day, to pull fire trucks, to protect people on their journeys. She’s a carriage dog. Intelligent, discerning, intuitive.
I wonder. Does anyone think I am anything more than a romance writer..?