Sis­ter with a big heart

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - PETS - Luke Bow­den Any­one in­ter­ested in shar­ing their best friends’ sto­ries can email luke. bow­den@ news. com. au

IN Amy Bax’s eyes she has two daugh­ters – Edie, her two- year- old daugh­ter and just as spe­cial is her four- year- old Mal­tese cross Jack Rus­sell, Lot­tie, who has defi nitely taken on her role as a big sis­ter to Edie with gusto and by the sounds of it, a tremen­dous amount of pa­tience.

You seem to be very en­am­oured of Lot­tie, have you al­ways grown up with dogs?

I got my fi rst dog, Tilly, when I was eight years old. She lived to quite an old age and I re­mem­ber she passed away on a Wed­nes­day and it was only a cou­ple days later and I said to my hus­band, Matthew, “right, we’re go­ing to the Dog’s Home to get an­other dog!”. I just couldn’t be with­out one. So we went and there was heaps of mas­tiffs and staffi es, which aren’t my cup of tea in the slight­est but as we were walk­ing down look­ing in­side each pen, at the very end there was this very fat and very old look­ing Pomera­nian and the sun was shin­ing di­rectly on her like it was a sign from the heav­ens so we took her home and named her Coco Chanel Made­moi­selle and she lived with us for four years un­til she passed away.

Soon af­ter there was an ad in the news­pa­per for Lot­tie’s lit­ter and so we got her a lit­tle over four years ago. As you can tell, I like scrag­gly rough look­ing dogs, I ab­hor lit­tle cute toy dogs!

What’s her per­son­al­ity like?

She is very, and I mean very, pro­tec­tive of Edie and I. She ab­so­lutely hates other dogs. She’s quite funny though – she has no prob­lems squar­ing up to a huge rot­tweiler but is ab­so­lutely pet­rifi ed of dogs smaller than her.

There is one ex­cep­tion though and that’s my Mum’s minia­ture fox ter­rier, Ernie. When it comes to Ernie, Lot­tie is just an out and out bully to him. If I leave Lot­tie at Mum’s place and Mum goes out of the house and leaves them alone then Lot­tie won’t even let Ernie out of the room he’s in at the time. She’ll just stand by the door and won’t let him past. Ernie gets re­ally anx­ious ( prob­a­bly from the con­stant bul­ly­ing from Lot­tie) and so Mum puts him in a Thun­der­Shirt some­times. ( Thun­derShirts are spe­cial an­i­mal coats used on dogs with anx­i­ety caused by thun­der­storms, travel, sep­a­ra­tion and so on).

And once Lot­tie wouldn’t let Ernie off the bed so he tried to crawl down off it at the back of the bed but the Vel­cro on the Thun­der­Shirt came un­done and stuck onto a blan­ket on the bed and poor Ernie was just left hang­ing mid- air in his Thun­der­Shirt un­til Mum came home.

She does, how­ever get along swim­mingly with your two- year- old daugh­ter Edie?

They get on amaz­ingly, they are ac­tu­ally like two sis­ters. Edie’s re­ally good at walk­ing now and she’s seen us walk­ing Lot­tie on the lead so she spends most of the day walk­ing Lot­tie around on her lead in­side the house.

Edie loves hav­ing her in her cot and Lot­tie is just so pa­tient with her; Edie could do any­thing to Lot­tie and she wouldn’t have the slight­est care. I think though that when Edie goes to the grand­par­ents for a short stay you can see just a lit­tle hint of re­lief on Lot­tie’s face when she gets to just sit on the couch and do noth­ing … I can defi nitely em­pathise with her there!

What’s great about hav­ing Lot­tie?

Defi nitely the re­la­tion­ship she has with Edie. The three of us go every­where to­gether. I’m just dog mad and so are all my friends so we usu­ally base all our so­cial out­ings around do­ing some­thing with them all to­gether, which is fan­tas­tic.

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