We’ve been connected to dogs since before Donner Lake, Emerald Bay, and Fallen Leaf Lake were created. Let that sink in for a bit.

That’s right, fossil evidence ties Homo sapiens to dog companionship for at least 15,000 years, whereas these local geological treasures finished forming at the close of the last ice age, around 10,000 years ago.

Which might lead one to question the leash law on the east end of Donner (just kidding, state parks, I get it. See story here).


Having been inextricably linked for tens of millennia, our relationship with canines has profound impact on our lives. They teach kids about responsibility and adults about patience. Dogs’ undying devotion to walks, adventure, snuggles, and food teaches us all about enjoying life to the fullest. And because their life span is considerably shorter than our two-leggeds’, we learn from them how to cope with the inevitable pain of losing a loved one.

The idea for this edition of Moonshine was hatched a few months ago when dog stories kept popping up in our brainstorming sessions. Like a dog does with a tasty bone, we stashed these ideas away and the result is what you hold in your hands. Our mission was to celebrate the canines who have it best in the world — Tahoe dogs.

For the highly active dogs in our area, it’s important to keep in mind they also need to stretch to prevent injuries. The food that fuels those outdoor adventures is likewise crucial. From the body to the mind, we look at how our four-legged friends inspire creative arts in DiStill Life.

A Sports & Outdoor piece delves into humans and their hunting dogs, reflecting what was likely the primordial basis of our kinship eons ago. We look at how even business revenue has been funneled to support animal well-being, which is profound proof of the enduring and inherent sway of canines.

And though it’s everyone’s favorite generic dog name, we at Moonshine don’t like our content to be “Fluffy,” so we dig deep, like a dog after a vole in your yard. The Ink’s new culture editor, Le‘a Gleason, looks into the growing role of dog parks in our area. Roving reporter, Sage Sauerbrey, recaps the investigation into a nearly tragic encounter between a Bernese with golf course pesticide.

Even I, an ardent animal lover, didn’t realize the range of stories that dogs could inspire. But funnily enough, we’ve done this before … inadvertently. Our graphic designer, Lauren Shearer, reminded me a few days before press of our January 2015 edition when we had an unusually large number of dogs in photos scattered throughout. It wasn’t done on purpose, but we chose to have fun with it and launched a contest: Count the number of dogs.

Well, I think that’s definitely in order now. Send in your count of how many dogs are pictured in this edition (including art and ads) to info@moonshineink.com. Those who get it right will be entered into a drawing for a special Moonshine Ink prize package including the best pen around, a ticket to a special Ink event coming this year, a bandana for you and your dog, and more. I’m pawsitive you’ll enjoy this prize — get counting!


  • Mayumi Peacock

    Hailing from a U.S. military family and a graduate of the University of Florida, Mayumi Peacock has lived in several corners of the country and globe, yet Tahoe/Truckee has been her home since 1999. She is founder and publisher of Moonshine Ink, the region’s award-winning independent newspaper, which continues to be created by, for, and of the community. Other passions include family, animals, books, healthy living, and humane food.

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