I was recently told by one of his veterinary doctors that Hershey did not just have a life, he had a lifestyle. Boy, did he ever. We took our pets with us everywhere up and down the east coast. Hershey loved the beautiful manicured lawns of our cities’ fine parks the best. We had a nickname for him: Dainty Foot. That’s because he had the pit bull trait of walking the perimeter of any space and he never ever got his feet muddy.
I lay next to him yesterday cuddling his head and one of the many things I whispered in his ear was “Remember the time Mom and Dad took you and Loolie to Charleston and Max and Maureen came along with us, buddy?” Here is a photo from that trip (Max the Poodle From Deer Isle is next to Scott whom you may not recognize without his beard).
So many people are afraid of pit bulls (until they meet a pit bull puppy as this adorable video shows!). One time an 18 month old stranger’s child ran up behind Hershey in Charleston’s great park and grabbed him unexpectedly from behind as her mom rushed over a few seconds later. Our sweet boy had the beginnings of arthritic hips even then. Hershey’s reaction to the surprise butt hug attack? He stood quietly, tried to wag his tail, and gently turned his head around to grin at the toddler. We were as relieved as her mother was.
Hershey’s early weeks began as a puppy in an abusive gang-style Southern pit bull fighting ring (where he first became frightened of loud gunshots and received a cigarette burn scar). That was followed by two years with another family whose daughter had rescued him at age 5 weeks from a shelter. Unfortunately, their idea of rescue was to keep him as an all season Outdoor Dog until we persuaded them to let us adopt him. His life began that day. By the way, so did his lifestyle.