March 26, 2016
Sheba, the Family Dog 🐶
Although my mother has never come right out and said it, I think she probably found me to be a rather demanding child as when I decided that I wanted something, I usually found a way to get it! But then, maybe I’m only remembering my own pushing of the proverbial “never take no for an answer” envelope. When I think back, all 4 of us kids were very fortunate in that although we were just an average, middle class family so not rich, we were given many of the things we wanted albeit most often after some pushing of that envelope! 🙂
The arrival of Sheba, the family dog, occurred in just that way … me kinda bulldozing the envelope, lol. Oh there was some lame support from the others … Russell mostly … I don’t think Randy and Terry cared one way or the other. The real work of changing Mom and Dad’s minds was done by me! (<–The dog in the photo looks like almost identical to Sheba but that isn’t actually a photo of her.)
A little background … on a bookshelf in the living room of the house on 64th Avenue was our family’s set of World Book Encyclopedias. Red covers with gold lettering <– like the set pictured here … I believe the edition was published in either a 1962 or 1963. In any event, those “books of knowledge” and the yearbooks that arrived each year for about 7 or 8 years were very well used by all 4 of us kids from elementary right through junior high school. And the spring of 1965 was no exception. 🙂
Earlier that school year, my childhood friend Donna’s family had adopted a puppy, a Beagle they called Skipper. Before long, I decided that we needed a dog too! That’s when I looked up “dogs” in the “D” volume of those red World Book Encyclopedias … and the job of getting us a family dog began!
Mom’s reaction was a resounding “no” when I first broached the subject. Dad just “hmmphff-ed” grumpily. Did I give up there? No way! (I’d only just begun!!!) For 8 days solid I begged and pleaded. Over and over I brought the “D” encyclopedia to Dad showing him all the different breeds of dogs. I was obsessed! Over and over I told my Mom that I would look after the dog … I promised I would feed, walk and love the dog. Over and over her answer was, “No dogs!” Dad on the other hand never really committed … and I quickly twigged onto how he seemed kinda interested each time I cornered him with the encyclopedia.
Then, on day 9 of my diligent pursuit, it happened! My prayers were answered! (And it hadn’t even taken all that long!)
It was a Saturday in May 1965 … nice weather as I recall … Terry and I had gone somewhere on the bus that morning … not sure if it was downtown or maybe to Bonnie Doon Shopping Centre. Anyway, after we were finished whatever it was that we’d gone to do, we hopped the bus home. I remember stepping off the S7 at our stop there on 66 Avenue and 87 Street to find Russell waiting for us … he was so excited as he blurted out, “Dad’s gone to get a dog! We’re getting a dog! He’ll be home soon! We’re getting a dog!”
We raced home and sure enough, it was all true … Mom confirmed it … Dad was really getting us a dog! A short time later, he arrived home and with him was Sheba, a 3 month old, purebred, long haired dachshund! She was cute as could be! What a thrill! That is until she pooped on carpet in the living room! (oops … and so her house training began!)
I’ve never known why Dad chose a dachshund and a long haired one at that. Sheba was quite unique … not a commonly seen breed in this area, even today. We had her for almost 13 years and during that time, many, many memories of Sheba, our family dog were made … she was a good pooch.
Thinking of Sheba reminds me that it was so like my Dad to just spring a surprise on one or all of us! Even though much of the time he was grumpy and seemed unapproachable, Dad came through with things for us kids alot (camping every summer, a motor bike for Randy, ballet lessons for Terry, music lessons for Russ and I). Mom too … she had a job outside the home even way back then when most moms stayed home. If it hadn’t been for that 2nd income, pushing the envelope would never have worked as often as it did all those years ago in the house on 64th Avenue!
Coming Soon … White Go Go Boots … 😀