I’m Therese Gilardi, paranormal romance writer, poet and essayist living in the hills above Los Angeles with my family and my pet menagerie. Like Lia in “Matching Wits With Venus”, I love dogs. One of my dogs holds a special place in my heart – his name is Ollie, and he was twice surrendered to the Los Angeles County Animal Shelter, which is where I found him, cowering in a cage near the door. Ollie is a lhasa apso, which I didn’t know until I took him to the vet – the pound had recorded him as another breed. Unfortunately that’s not all that remains a mystery about Ollie – we have no accurate record as to his age, and no sense at all what his life was like before his first surrender. The only thing I know for sure is that his days were filled with trauma – he is always on guard and only now, after over two years with us, is he comfortable enough to nap when not in his crate.
Ollie has brought a lot of love to our family. But he’s also tested our resolve. Having a dog who’s been so traumatized he bit the vet while under anaesthesia out of his fear that someone other than a family member would touch him means that we have to tread slowly at all times. Owning Ollie is hard work. Like Lia, we believe that every dog deserves a home. So won’t you please consider offering a canine some companionship this Valentine’s Day? If you’re not comfortable adopting a dog, your local shelter will welcome donations of food, blankets, towels and toys.
What kind of pet do you have?