LIBBY

LIBBY

December 10, 2008

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A match made in heaven

Libby, treasured Keeshond of Debbie Lewandowski of Mission Viejo, passed away shortly before Christmas. She was believed to be about 12.  Adopted in February 2001 from a shelter that caters only to Keeshonds (a lively, intelligent breed recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1930), Libby (shown above with a certain friend) was named by shelter caregivers who felt they had “liberated” her from bleak circumstances. “I didn’t have the heart to change the name,” Debbie said.

The other love of her life

couple.jpgFor Debbie Hawkins (her last name at the time), it was a match made in heaven – in more ways than one. Libby was that rare Keeshond (pronounced “Kayz-hund”) able to bring pint-sized Debbie together with theother love of her life, Mark Lewandowski. The two met when Debbie was out for a walk with her eye-catching, gray-and-tan canine cohort. No one quite remembers if it was the lion’s ruff around Libby’s neck, the richly plumed tail that curled over her back, or the pink rhinestone collar and black leash decorated with doggie bones that grabbed Mark’s attention, not to mention everything about Debbie. Regardless, a new love story was born, two people meeting “cute” over a dog within a Mission Viejo condo community in the fall of 2003. Granted, Mark got to feeling like “an ambulance chaser,” hunting Debbie down until she agreed to marry him two years later.

Not exactly your ideal guard dog

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TONTO

TONTO

December 2, 2008

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 Diane felt blessed

Tonto, beloved companion of Diane Eisner of Trabuco Canyon, died of a stroke on Tuesday, December 2, 2008. He was hovering outside the kitchen, waiting for a snack, when he passed. The precise age of the black-and-white pit bull/Labrador mix with the sad eyes and crooked tail is unknown.  He was adopted.  Friends, unable to find a rental home that accepted two kids and a dog, opted to keep the kids and give Diane the dog. Diane felt blessed.

The result of hard knocks and obedience training (which didn’t quite take), Tonto liked to chase skunks, tree opossums and eat cat poop. An equal opportunity provider, he preferred to hump males but would also hump females – regardless of breed, age, ethnicity or appearance. He never quite came out of the closet.

“Why aren’t you scratching my ears?”

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MAGNETO

MAGNETO

2006-2007

By Katharine Blossom Lowrie

You just sorta put up with the ruckus

black-cat-coco-2.jpgHow we felt when Magneto left us, well, you cannot fathom our grief. So young, less than two years old, so full of promise, he was gone too soon. Granted, he could get on your nerves, especially his stepbrother Wai’s nerves. Wai (Hawaiian for “water”) tolerated him well enough-up until Magneto decided to torment the hell out of him in the late afternoons. The fights got so bad at times we had to hold our ears. Few had the gall to chastise the boys. Daddy Fred, who spoiled them rotten, wouldn’t hear of inhibiting exuberant youth.

But when Fred got sick with cancer, a funny thing happened. Both boys became extraordinarily protective–especially Magneto, a mischievous scamp no one had ever accused of being the least mature. Two weeks or so before Fred died, in fact, the two hardly left his side. They lay there on his rented hospital bed, cuddled up at his feet, two guardian angels: Magneto, a slinky coal-black cat, and Wai, his longhaired, gray-and-white stepbrother.

Keep the kids together

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