She ain’t nothing but a hound dog.

Dear friends,

Meet Lily Pad.


Her name is Lily but, of course, I prefer Lily Pad. (Two-name first names are a big deal in my family in case you don’t remember so she’s getting the VIP treatment.) Parker suggested I call her Lady Lily Pad but I think Her Highness the Duchess of Lily Pad is more distinguished.

I snapped this photo of her in the truck on the way home Sunday. She assumed this position about 10 minutes into our 5-hour drive and slept the entire way home. I loved her the minute I met her in a parking lot on Friday afternoon. But once I saw that wrinkly forehead that is the telltale sign of a hound dog, I swooned and knew she’d always be ours.

Her foster mom told us she is part Labrador Retriever and part Redbone Coonhound. Based on appearance and personality, she seems all hound. She sniffs as if it’s an Olympic sport and she’s a gold medalist. And she’s definitely got the energy and drive of an Olympian. She’s a bit hardheaded but she’s also so very sweet. She’s the first big dog that I’d consider living inside my home — assuming she’s trainable, of course. Right now, she’s a puppy on overdrive and we’re just trying to survive the first month of puppy parenting, which involves crate training and keeping everything you own from being chewed into smithereens.

Ed has been friendly to her (Ed’s friendly to everybody though). Sweetpea has not. In fact, Sweetpea acts as if she wishes Lily Pad would suddenly disappear. Or die. Sushi the cat is terribly worried, as evidenced by a panicked stare and a forehead almost as wrinkly as Lily’s.

Parker is trying to get used to rising early and turning in late so he can walk Lily before school and at bedtime. Mr. Mom is trying to get used to a demanding daycare schedule for what is essentially a highly mobile, diaperless infant with very sharp teeth. (Lordy, lordy I forgot how much work puppies are.) I apparently am in the catbird seat because I don’t have to walk her or train her and I get the pleasure of enjoying her company on my schedule.

And isn’t that a convenient way to have a baby?

With gratitude {for all the good and bighearted folks in the dog rescue world, especially the Oklahoma woman who is responsible for getting Lily to us},

Joan, who wishes to warn you in advance that you will likely tire of Lily photos and stories long before she does