I was late to the party on pet ownership. I was too busy traveling the world producing and filming international television commercials, while living in Italy, to care for a pet. I returned to the States in my late thirties and a colleague gave me a Jack Russell Terrier when his Momma Jack had one more puppy than was anticipated. I named him Lawrence—Larry for short. That dog became my world and subsequently became my fiancés running partner and sidekick, even at our wedding. A dear friend suddenly lost her dog and wanted a ‘Larry’ of her very own. I rescued a female Jack, who I named Lola, from a puppy mill. She became Lawrence’s wife and gave us three precious pups. My friend fell in love with the first-born, whom she named Freddie. That pup helped rescue her from the sadness of mourning her beloved dog.
I have come to believe pets rescue us as much we rescue them.
I recently had to make the difficult decision to put Lola to rest because of a descending paralysis while I was in the midst of a painful divorce. I am an only child and rarely feel loneliness. I spent the loneliest week of my life until my ‘Angel’ Vet, Dr. Gretchen, called from Rescue Village to tell me there was a 1 y/o female Jack that she knew was for me and I must adopt. My new Betty rescued me in a poignant moment of my life. Of course, we went to obedience classes together so I would be reminded how to raise up a very good dog.
I began collaging dogs when I was illustrating and writing the first book of the Lawrence the Wonder Dog™ series last year. I plan to write and illustrate as many children’s picture books as there are adventures my dog Lawrence shared with me. All of these adventures have a parallel message for children.
The first, Lawrence The Wonder Dog Outwits the Bullies, shows Lawrence using an alternative method to handling bullying. The second book is close to my heart as my sister died young from the measles—about the seriousness of getting vaccinated. The third will address good citizenship and pet education, as two ferocious dogs—off their leashes, attacked a dear friends dog recently.
I am so pleased to announce that I’m being considered for the Heights Arts Pet Project. I had wanted to display my collages at Rescue Village and other rescue organizations while donating a portion of my sales back to these incredible causes. Heights Arts Pet Project will allow me to broaden that reach.