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This is the first picture I ever saw of Coco and I fell instantly in love. I’d been talking about getting a dog ever since my ex and I broke up in March 2013. It was something just for me. A commitment I was happy to make.

I told my parents I wouldn’t be getting anything too big. A cavalier maybe or a border collie; manageable I promised. But I grew up with German Shepherds. My first ever dog was Denny a beautiful female shepherd. When she passed away we got Zara …. Our first ever foray into pedigree shepherds. She moved with my family interstate even. After Zara was my beloved Yanna, a 6 month rescue pup whose first family didn’t want her. She was my sweetheart – fierce, selective about humans and dogs, a total underdog. We had to work hard for her love…but she adored us so much. A few years after Yanna we introduced Dex…. The first boy and now the biggest shepherd we’ve ever owned at almost 45 kg. He’s a big loveable bear who pretty much likes everyone and everything.

So when I started following the German Shepherd only rescue GSDS in need I still wasn’t planning on adopting a shepherd. But the universe had other plans.

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This was taken the day I brought Coco home with me. I was so nervous the week prior going to the meet n greet with her and the rescue group. I naively didn’t realise how serious these people took their rescue… I had to tell them where she would sleep, how big my yard was, how tall the fences, did I have other pets, what were my qualifications and experience with the German Shepherd breed, etc etc. When I arrived at the park to meet Coco and Lisa (the founder of GSDS in need) Coco ran over to the fence to see me. She ran around and came up a few times shyly to me to say hello or lick me. Then it was the walk test… I must’ve passed because by the end of the meeting she was lying at my feet with one paw on my foot claiming me. Lisa says Coco choose me…. I joke that she took one look at me and thought, ‘this sucker will do whatever I want’.

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It’s not hard to love Coco. Even when she does eat $180 worth of sandals. She’s my dog and I’m her person. Her devotion to me is so sweet and I treasure her love. I don’t know much of her life before me. I try not to think any bad thoughts over her first family that surrendered her for their own private reasons. But I will say now she is so loved.

Coco has taught me many things and I’m always learning from her:
– I’m more patient
– I’ve learnt to accept that everything I own has dog hair on it
– My day starts with a lick from an excitable overgrown puppy who wants to go for her morning walk
– Fanny packs are another word for treat bag
– My food is her food
– Dogs like ice cream too
– My bed is her bed
– Shoes taste delicious to dogs
– As do expensive lingerie (she never touches the stuff from kmart)
– Dog food can be ordered online and delivered to your door
– Birds are food, not friends (I swear she hasn’t caught one yet)
– The car is king
-The lead/leash is queen
– Every day is a good day for a walk
– The best defence for a bad day is a cuddle from your dog

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As I write this the spoilt pocket princess is sleeping on her second throne… At the foot of my bed. It’s too hot for her to snuggle on the bed with me at the moment. Tonight has been a challenge, she was unsettled and was acting out. I call it typical juvenile behaviour…after all she’s 3.5 years old in human years but really she’s acting like a spoilt 21 year old (her dog year age).

So a year on I look back and realise getting Coco was seriously one of the best things I’ve ever done!

Who else owns a crazy dog or has a beloved pet?…..

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