Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Doggone Blog Hop for Charity

Hello all! I am so excted to be participating in the Doggone Blog Hop for Charity!

Meet Maggie Moo! This endearing 8 year old greyhound/lab mix literally trotted into our lives on Easter Sunday of 2012.

Our journey began Good Friday , the plan had been to get our feet wet looking for a dog. St. Hubert's in North Branch had many dogs available for adoption, especially seniors. Given our schedules, an older dog would be a perfect fit.

As we were getting ready to leave we took one last walk out back and looked at the dogs in the outdoor runs when this gorgeous lady, lying so nonchalantly in a huge sunspot, glanced over her shoulder and took us in. After sizing us up, she stood gingerly, so thin and cautious, and came over, liquid brown eyes sparkling in the sunlight.

Those eyes reminded me so much of our first dog, also a greyhound/lab mix we'd adopted many years ago from St. Hubert's in Madison … our first beloved Maggie.

Yes, their names were the same. When the volunteer told me her name was Margaret but they called her Maggie, I looked over at my husband and saw the coincidence wasn't lost on him either.

We asked to take her out and as we walked to the outdoor meet and greet area, she followed close at my side, nudging my hip as we strolled along as if to hurry me up. Once inside and off the leash, she took one look at us and then the cool, green grass and … the grass won out. *laughs*

Grass is her catnip. She loves to lie in the grass; to roll in the grass; to breathe deeply of the grass; to sleep in the grass.

Of course, it was love at first sight but since we had cats, also seniors, we needed to think about how she would fit in with that dynamic. Besides, adopting a dog is a huge commitment and we wanted to take the time to sleep on it. Morning came and we were back at the shelter, giving Maggie the 'cat' test. She passed with flying colors and the decision was unanimous … she was coming home with us! Mellow and sweet, she would be a wonderful addition to our family.

Saturday was spent preparing the house for her arrival and Sunday we picked her up and brought her home.

Eager, friendly, yet cautious cats awaited her arrival and after a carefully supervised meet and greet, a couple of our cats began to groom her. Then she licked one of them and we noticed her spotted tongue … both sides! She chose a bed of her own and made herself at home and it was as if she'd always been there.

A visit with the vet a couple of days later led to a clean bill of health except for her being considerably underweight at only 44 pounds. The stress of being in a shelter had taken its toll on her and the plan was to add some weight over the course of a few months.

Fortunate to be able to take her to the office with me those first few weeks, we were able to bond quickly and settle into a routine. Co-workers nicknamed her 'Maggie Bag of Bones' and 'My Little Pony'.

Over the next few months we did what we needed to do in order for her to gain weight and we took her on frequent, short walks so as not to tax her obviously achy joints. We loved seeing the spring in her step and the sparkle in her eyes as we went on our daily walks. We quickly learned that Maggie loves walking almost as much as she loves grass.

A year later, with even brighter eyes, a shiny coat, and 66 pounds to call her own, Maggie is thriving and much to our surprise has the energy of a puppy! So much for a laid back senior dog! *laughs* She is quick to remind us when its walk time with what we'll call her 'inside voice' … she doesn't bark but she'll try to 'talk' and never fails to make us laugh.

I think she knows she's making us laugh too because I swear this dog smiles. She prances and hops like a kangaroo to where her leash is and waits patiently for the walking shoes to go on. Wonderful in the house and always eager to snuggle on the couch with us, she seems to find her greatest joy in the great outdoors.

We've always adopted our animal companions and we've been blessed over the years to have some truly remarkable souls come into our lives. Everyone comments on how we saved Maggie from the shelter but the truth is we saved each other. Life is all the better with a dog named Maggie Moo.


In honor of Maggie, I'm giving away several prizes including a PDF copy of my e-book, Skin Deep, an erotic contemporary novella; a PDF copy of my newest release, Whisper Sweet Nothings, a short erotic contemporary; and a $10.00 Gift Certificate to Secret Cravings Publishing.

All you need to do to be entered for these prizes is vote for Maggie Moo and leave a comment with the words TOP DOG! 

In addition to the above prizes, I will donate $1.00 to St. Hubert's in Branchburg, NJ for EVERY comment left in honor of Maggie and all the dogs (and cats *winks*) who bless our lives!

The contest will run from June 19th through June 21st and end at midnight. The winner will be announced and notified on Sunday. Be sure to leave your e-mail address at the end of your comment so I can contact you if you're a winner! The winner will be chosen by!

Be sure to visit all the authors participating in the
Doggone Blog Hop for Charity at
Thank you again for stopping by and be sure to tell your friends about our Doggone Blog Hop for Charity event! The more the merrier!

XOXO Layla Hunter XOXO