| Trixie & Tanya
two first family shelties were acquired when I was 9 years old. We were living in England at the time
because my dad's work had sent him there. My mum had always favoured larger dogs, and we had a Newfoundland
earlier. But the thing was that we were living in a rented house - with no dogs allowed! The owners were somewhere
in the East - Bangkok, Singapore... My mum finally persuaded their agent to forward a plea. She must have been
convincing. I think a warped dogless childhood was mentioned. We were graciously granted permission to keep one
My mum is not a bibliophile for nothing. She immediately started studying dog literature
to find the right breed. She decided on the Shetland Sheepdog because it sounded like a large dog in a small
package. Off we went to a large sales kennel. To my knowledge nothing like this exists in Denmark (thankfully).
Puppies of many different breeds were collected from hobby breeeders. It was not actually a dog factory,
but still definitely not the best place to buy a dog. Being removed from adult dogs at such an early age
deprives the puppies of learning valuable social skills. We were fairly lucky with the dogs we purchased
We brought home a small sable sheltie puppy that we called Trixie. Two weeks later when
we ran out of dog food, my dad declared that since we were going up there anyway to buy more food, we might as
well buy another puppy so Trixie would have something else to bite than his ankles. And if anyone complained,
we would just say they were seeing double.
From a new large litter I picked Tanya. An adorable little sable with a big white collar.
Every time she saw me at the door to their pen, she would sit and bark with delight: "Look at me!" I
am tempted to say that in fact she picked me.
So Trixie became my mum's dog and Tanya became mine. Even though neither was from a well-known
breeder, they had the famous sire Jefsfire Freelancer in their pedigrees. They followed us on our many outings in
England and when we moved back to Denmark. They lived till they were 12½. Both are now buried in my parents'
garden in Virum.