Hoke and Cricket's daughter Jan, with her owner Don, on Christmas Eve out visiting. A few weeks ago, Jan nearly died after finding a tasty treat tucked away in Don's shop - D-Con rat poison packets. Several of them. She was already bleeding out when he rushed her to the ER vet in Corvallis, who is an angel. She stayed with Jan all night, giving her blood transfusions and vitamin K injections and draining the blood from her lungs and abdomen several times. Even the next morning, it wasn't a done deal - Jan still had a long ways to go to exit the proverbial woods. Don jumped every time the phone rang, according to his wife Donna, but then wasn't sure he wanted to answer it and hear the news if it was bad. He told me over and over that he just couldn't bear losing that little monster, no matter how many pairs of his shoes she ate. But, that's ancient history (except for the shoe-eating part) now, and Jan's fully recovered and helping Don move his cows when needed. The other day, she went under the fence to corral two young calves that had been pushed thru the fence by the older cows. She fetched them back and pushed them back thru the fence neat as a pin for him, saving him a lot of time and effort. While that is an important part of why Don has her, it's only the small part. The biggest part is to be his devoted and loving companion, and she goes everywhere with him. EVERYONE knows Jan! If I'm driving Really Big Red locally, someone usually asks me if I'm Jan's breeder (signage on the tailgate helps). She's a looker with those eyes too, and believe me - she knows exactly how to use those eyes of hers.
It is truly a match made in heaven, and Don tells me that every time we see each other. They are getting ready to head to Vegas in the RV for the winter as usual, and Don can't wait to do so. He's going to find some obedience classes to take while he's there and he's looking forward to being able to spend a lot more time one on one working with his little angel in red. Maybe he can start by teaching her to NOT eat his shoes.