FOR DECADES, I WAS A CAT PERSON. Then two things happened: I fell in love and I met Rudy.
I was in between feline friends when I started dating my wife—who would be perfect if not for her allergy to, you guessed it. Committing to her meant cats were permanently out of the picture. “So what if we got a dog?” I surprised myself by asking one day, after years without a pet.
Rudy, a doe-eyed rescue of indeterminate heritage, came to us last August. My wife and I soon learned he was afraid of sudden movements, loud noises, many men and most dogs. What he did like: running away, overgrown lawns, the one chair in the house we had declared off limits and, eventually, us.
Life with Rudy these past 15 months has taught me the importance of managing my expectations, the value of a well-made harness and the simple joy of getting lost in tall grass with the best pup around. I am now an unabashed dog person.
Judging by the submissions we received for our inaugural Canada’s Greatest Pets contest, many of you are equally devoted to your animals. In this month’s cover story (page 30), you can read all about the winner and the wonderful runners-up who make each day that much sweeter for their human companions.