Thank you for taking the time to talk to me and share your story with our Puddles Barkery friends. My first question, how did you meet each of the All Dog Kind dogs?
I like this question because, in a lot of ways, it gets to the origin story of All Dog Kind. When you look at our Etsy shop or if you browse through my booth at an event, you’re going to see all the dogs that I know very well. I know all of their names; their little personality quirks. I met them through dog walking, through my family and friends and, of course, three are my own - Jack, Sophie and Gus. This is what makes these [dog] portraits special. It’s the reason they are being featured. Each of the dog pins and stickers have become little good-luck charms, since they represent the dogs in my life. At least that is what I hope people are getting from them. A lot of pet owners see their dogs in these portraits as well.
To continue this question, how did you meet Jack, Sophie and Gus specifically?
Jack I found when I was in college and when I had no business in adopting a dog. One weekend, my parents were in town and we visited our usual sandwich shop. Next door to the shop, there was a Petco or Petsmart that was having an adoption event in front of the store.
After we finished lunch, we walked by the adoption event and I saw Jack. He was in a kennel; he was very sad looking and so skinny, so I asked about him. I asked if I could try and walk him and they said, “You know, I’m sorry, he’s been through a lot. He’s probably not going to walk on a leash with you.” But he did. I just knew that he was my dog. What was really surprising was that my parents were okay with this. <laughter> But in hindsight, my dad has explained that, of course he wanted his daughter who went off to college to have a large dog with her. I have had Jack for 12 years and he is 14 years old now.
A year and some change later, my best friend found Sophie by a dumpster in a college apartment complex area. He called me in a panic because he had no idea what to do with that tiny puppy. She was so small that her butt fit in the palm of my hand; and she was really cute. We took her to the vet with the intentions of getting her checked out and then being responsible and sending her to a good animal rescue to find her a home. But is was too late, I had fallen in love with her. And then I was in college with TWO dogs. It was just two dogs for a very long time.
About 10 months ago, my husband, Justin, and I were visiting the new Seattle Humane building that is two doors down from his workplace in Bellevue. I went there with the intention of taking some pictures of the dogs that need homes. I thought I'd draw them and then post them on social media to practice drawing and help these dogs get exposure. The last dog that we saw in the large dog run was Gus. I think the words, “Oh crap” came out of my mouth when I saw him. It was like I just knew; in a subconscious way that you don’t fully understand or become aware of until you’re telling the story afterwards. While, in general, people have no business having three dogs in a city, we are really happy and we make it work for us. I’m also really glad because Jack is 14 and Gus is so young, I hope Jack can rub off on Gus a little bit.