I love my dog.

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I love my dog. A good dog can bring comfort after a long day, make you smile when your heart is broken, and make you say “aww” when you discover her curled up in your spot on the couch. My family has had a number of exceptional pets. In no particular order, there’s been Murphy, Molly, Smokey, Max, Winnie, Rufus, Ruby, Princess (we didn’t name her), Carmen, Max(ine), Petey, Cheerio, Pinky, Pogo, Bailey, Rusty, Calvin, and Hobbes. Extended family pets include Scout, Lele, Tiger, and Rocco. I’m sure there have been more, but those were the most memorable ones anyway. Among them, there were dogs, cats, countless fish, a turtle, a bird, and roughly 200 hamsters. A note to parents out there: It might not be the best idea to buy both a male and a female hamster and keep them in the same cage. 


I got Carmen during a particularly depressing Spring. I had experienced disappointment, loss, and tragedy which I hadn’t known before and my mom knew I could use a pick-me-up. It was probably not the most responsible thing to do, getting a dog at that time, but I certainly don’t regret it. Mom had heard about some puppies that needed good homes, and we had no intention of going to look at them. We left the house on a day trip for her work, intentionally not packing a change of puppy-appropriate clothing. After the work thing, we talked each other into going to the store and actually buying new puppy-appropriate clothing. “We’ll just go look.” Yeah, right. Nobody just goes and looks at puppies. The day ended with Carmen riding home with us, with all her paperwork in order, and me saying “I can’t believe we just got a new puppy!” That’s when it was absolutely decided that Carmen was my dog, not our dog, a formality in responsibility for this 20-year-old college student who didn’t have her own place yet.

Carmen will be eight years old in February. She has anxiety when it comes to fireworks and thunderstorms. She sometimes chews the fur off her poor little toes. She can be unpredictable around other dogs. But at the end of the day, she is a wonderful dog. Carmen is everything you would want in a good dog. It’s hard to explain, but she’s a part of our family. She sits on Chris’s lap as if she’s a lap dog, even though she weighs 33 lbs. I love it when she curls up next to me on the couch, even though you’re not supposed to let your pets up on the furniture. And she flips out over her favorite dog treats. Don’t even say that word out loud. “Treat” has been turned into “snackums” because if she hears us say “treat” she goes nuts and there’s no going back. “Outside” has the same affect.

Dog owners know what I mean. There’s a connection and a friendship between people and their pets, much like those once-in-a-lifetime friendships that occur people-to-people… I just love my dog. That’s all. This is really just an excuse to show you pictures of my dog.

Andrea Gardiner

I am an interior designer and crafter living in Marquette, Michigan. To view conceptual renderings, drawings and photographs of my work as an interior designer, please view my portfolio. Contact me if you’re interested in interior design services or custom crafts.

EMAIL: andrea@andreagardiner.com

PHONE: 248-990-0396