I can’t imagine life without dogs. I’ve been fortunate enough to share my life with seven dogs so far, and from them, I have learned the value of loyalty, sympathy, intuition, joy in things as simple as a butterfly, and most of all, unconditional love. I think dogs are the very best people.

The Things We Don't Say

The Things We Don't Say

1. Will was a black and white border collie. He was quite elderly when I was born. There are photos of him, sitting with me on a picnic blanket that was spread out in our garden under a shady tree at my home in South Australia when I was very small. Clearly, he was the most trustworthy and patient of creatures- I have a photo of me placing my doll, Polly on his head!

2. Julie- yes, Julie. I named her when I was three. After Will died, we went to the RSPCA and my family told me I chose the ugliest dog there. I decided that was a compliment. Julie was a mix of all good breeds, corgi, Jack Russell, a myriad of dogs. She never strayed out of our garden once, which was large and had no front gates. I adored her. She comforted me during moments of adolescent angst and slept under the kitchen table in a basket. Julie was always there.

3. Julie died when I was fifteen. I was devastated but then Emma, a West Highland Terrier, arrived on Christmas day in a box decorated with wrapping paper. She was tiny, a little white bundle whom I could fit into the palm of my hand. And Emma had gumption, character, a mind of her own. Emma was independent, inquisitive, and exceedingly fun. She put up with no nonsense. Emma always did her own thing.

4. Emma died when I was thirty. By then, I was married, and, a couple years later, with two toddlers, I decided it was time to get another dog. I wanted my children to grow up with animals around the place and Jesse was a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. My son named him after Postman Pat’s black and white cat, Jess. Jesse was affectionate, a darling of a dog. His tail never stopped wagging. I sobbed when he died. He was a lovely boy who had a friendly greeting for everyone he met.

5. Esta- friends had a whippet and a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and they seemed to be the most companionable of dogs. Esta is an Italian Greyhound, who was bred by a friend of mine, but she’d broken her hip, so I took her in. She’s the most loving, warm, intuitive dog I’ve ever known. Whenever anyone is upset, she’s there for you. Esta is now very ill, and I can’t bear the thought of losing her, but she’s had a wonderful life and I will always love her.

6. Bambi- Bambi is Esta’s sister, her twin from the same litter. When the breeder was looking for a home for this joyous girl who falls over her own feet and knocks the water bowl over every day without fail, I couldn’t resist. Bambi is joy. She is friendly, warm, loving, and just full of life. She is the first to make sure she’s coming home in the car with me whenever we are out, and I love her for that.

7. Sassy- Sassy is Esta and Bambi’s great niece, a gorgeous little blue Italian Greyhound pup who came to live with us three weeks ago. Sassy broke her leg on a run in the park a few months ago and needed a new home. She’s smart, affectionate, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone so pleased to see me when I walk in the door! I know it’s going to be awful when Esta dies, but Sassy, well, I don’t know whether I’ll be looking after Sassy, or she’ll be looking after me! She’s super intelligent, has these great big ears and goes and stands by her lead in the morning and talks to me! I think she will give us all a new lease of life. Dogs seem to do that.

RELATED: What does it mean to dream about a dog?

The dream could be acting as a reminder to you to protect something or someone in your life- perhaps more so than you are now. Or are you the one who needs looking after? If the dog was friendly, this might indicate that someone is looking out for you. A dog can also be a sign of faith and companionship, so perhaps as well as feeling protected, this person also offers you these things too... to read more click HERE