Happy Barkday Porter! Six years ago today our dog Porter came into our lives. We met him through the Rescue Warriors group and drove out to Woodstock to meet him. They had named Healy as part of a theme of Orange is the New Black names for all the dogs rescued from a puppy mill in Kansas. He was small and timid, didn't know how to walk on a leash. We happened to have a basket in the car, so we carried him home in that. He would often ride in baskets from then on and people that met him joked he was Toto. Then we would joke he even came from Kansas. We do not know how old he was when we met him. Rescue said the mill records had him as 5, but all the vets said he was at least 10. He was missing all but 3 teeth from the poor conditions of the early parts of his life and had terrible cuts on his paws that made it hard for him to walk. The cage he had lived that part of his life in had a chicken wire floor raised off the ground that would cut up his paws.

We loved Porter and kept him with us when ever we could. We could never potty train him because of his previous life, and at first tried to have him sleep in our kitchen (only place with tile floors. He was our stubborn little guy and no matter what we tried he always broke through every barrier we could think of. We relented and he eventually found his way to sleeping with us. Porter never knew how to be a dog. So we got our second dog Stout in hopes that would help. It helped a little but not like we hoped. Porter was my wife's "Dog of Honor" at our wedding and Stout was my "Best Dog". We built our honeymoon around them renting a small cabin with a huge yard. Before both our sons came Elisabeth would hold Porter like a baby, since he was the same size.

Just over two weeks ago Saturday morning July 25th 2020, Porter passed away. We knew he wasn't doing well, but thought we had more time. We planned to have a special day celebrating Porter. I wanted to bring him to the studio to get a good portrait of him to remember him by. Hug your dogs, hug your loved ones. Just make sure they know how much you care. It always feels like there's more time later, until there isn't. Porter we love you and miss you.