It was a nightmare, like the ones where I run on the couch asleep but with my legs churning. Deep in sleep I’m being chased by the UPS truck or a giant cat. This nightmare was even scarier.

     It started when we went to the shelter. I don’t get to pick which dog we take for a walk. Generally I trust my people to do that. Sometimes they pick some real wing nuts. In the yard on this particular day were Sonny, a Yellow Lab mix, Domino, a Pit Bull mix, a Border Collie named Plato, and a Black Lab mix named Mystic. My person, who thinks he’s pretty funny, chose Mystic.   

     We got Mystic out of the shelter and brought her over to the car for a sniff. Olive and I came over, greeted Mystic, and I shot my guy a dirty look. I shook my head once to make sure I was seeing clearly. Have we landed on some planet inhabited by tall skinny black lab mixes? Olive seemed happy. Wait a minute, which one is Olive? I was having double vision.   


     Describing Mystic is easy. She looks exactly like my sister Olive. In fact from any distance it’s impossible to tell them apart. She’s a skinny, lanky mix of Black Lab and some kind of hound. She’s a young lady, about 1 year old, weighs about 40 pounds and has just a splash of white on the end of her snout. Seeing two Olives – or two Mystics –  made me a little grumpy, but I have to admit that the car ride over to my house was uneventful. At the house Mystic met my two-legged family. She was well-behaved around the baby and took her treats nicely from my folks.

     We took a stroll in the neighborhood and stopped at the meadow to let everyone stretch their legs. Mystic was good on a leash, pulling a little but not too much. When we got her out in the open she and Olive went a little crazy. They played chase. They played with a stick. They chased a ball. Mystic listened when she was called. Olive didn’t mess with me at all. This wasn’t so bad after all. I like this Mystic dog. Maybe what we need to do is make a trade. I stared intently at my person trying to convey that very thought.

     Mystic was rescued from Reno, where the animals aren’t as lucky as their counterparts in the mountains. She doesn’t really seem to know her name but comes when called, especially when you have a treat for her. She isn’t too jumpy (like my sister) and didn’t bark at all on our walk. We met a few dogs while we were out and Mystic was friendly with just about everyone. She has no idea where to sit in the car. She climbed over the driver’s seat on our way back to the shelter but I think she just wanted some air. With a little love Mystic is going to be a great active companion. She’s already better behaved than Olive. My nightmare turned out to be nothing more than a pleasant afternoon with some friends. Whew.

     For more information on Mystic or any of the other great friends at the Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe visit our newly designed website at Don’t forget to register you and your pet for Black Tie and Tails this Valentine’s Day at the Resort at Squaw Creek. This is the social event of the season. See you on the red carpet.

     ~ Email me at


Dress Up Dog Contest
March 7
Don’t miss this SnowFest fun. The Dress Up Your Dog Contest will have several categories this year, with Grand Prize going to the ‘Best Dressed Transit Dog.’ Sponsored by TNT/TMA this year, the contest entry is $10 per dog. All entries are invited to participate later in the Kings Beach Winter Fun Parade at 11 a.m. Contest at the North Tahoe Event Center at 9 a.m. 8318 North Lake Tahoe Boulevard, Kings Beach,, 530-581-3922.

Dogs Still Need Homes

In January 2008, 145 dogs were abandoned after their owner died at a ranch near Gabbs, Nevada. Through the collaborative effort of animal welfare organizations nationwide, all of the canines were saved and placed in shelters across Nevada and California. The Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe (HSTT) rescued six of them and has adopted out four. The other two dogs, Eddie and Kumquat, are still looking for safe homes.
‘Many of these dogs lacked love and socialization through most of their lives,’ said Nanette Cronk, animal programs manager of the Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe. ‘Working with the Gabbs dogs has been both the most challenging and rewarding task in my career…Eddie was a particular challenge,’ she said said. ‘He was nicknamed ‘Elusive Eddie’ because he managed to stay out on the ranch for almost a month after all the other dogs had been rescued. When he was finally rescued, he certainly did not trust humans. With a lot of daily effort from both HSTT staff and volunteers, Eddie has changed from a wild dog into a loving pet.’ To meet Eddie and Kumquat, go to HSTT’s Adoption Day, every Saturday from noon to 2 p.m. at the Town of Truckee Animal Kennel., 530-587-5948.

Pet Food
Many people have been forced to give up their pets due to the slowing economy. The Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe wants to help ensure that people can keep their animals. If it is financially difficult for you, or someone you know, to feed a pet the Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe can assist with your pet’s nutritional needs. Give them a call at 530-587-5948 or 530-581-3199 to learn how to obtain free pet food.

Pet Tails
We would love to share your heartwarming, funny, and/or consciousness-raising pet tales with our readers. Please send your stories to Write Pet Tails in the subject line. We love photos, too. Make sure they are print quality: at least 200 dpi at 3 by 5 inches.


Previous articleFood Labels
Next articleStubby and Bubbles