After my brother retired, he got a dog. Now, he's had a succession of dogs throughout his life, starting with a puppy for his birthday at the age of six. All the other dogs he has had, however, have been regular old outdoor, live in a doghouse dogs, not short furry people with living room access.
Pepper is a striking dog, so named because she's sprinkled with black spots as if well peppered, as my sister-in-law said. Supposedly she is half Australian Shepherd, half Shiba Inu. I will believe the Shiba part, because she has many of the physical characteristics, but she got blue eyes from somewhere else - people eyes, I call them. I think it's disturbing to look a dog in the face when it's got the same color eyes as you do. But, I digress.
Part of Pepper's daily routine is a visit to my mother's house during one of their daily walks, which is just a block from my brother's. She even comes inside the house at Mom's, which I would have never believed in a million years unless I had seen it myself. Mom is not an indoor animal person. She has, however, accepted that three of her "grandchildren" appear to be two cats and a dog, and if I were to visit with my Molly, the cat would be welcomed indoors (who are you and what have you done with my mother? But, I digress again.).
For Christmas Pepper got packages like everyone else in the house - treats and squeaky toys and a very nice light blue rain coat, lined with warm snuggly flannel. I bought this at the Petsmart while surreptitiously eyeing the dogs in the groomer's, trying to find one Pepper-sized to check the fit of the coat. I wasn't sure that my brother would clothe a dog, even though he is very fond of her. But, Christmas afternoon, he suited her up and went for a walk. By the way, Pepper took to the coat like gangbusters and didn't make a whimper of protest. She seemed to really like it.
Up and down the block they went, until my brother turned for home. Pepper would have none of it. Did she want to go to Granny's house? No. Have an off-lead run at the ball field? Not a chance. She lead him down the block, turned the corner and came to a stop in front of the house where one of her playmates lives, a small fluffy white dog who has an array of coats and slickers for inclement weather days.
Pepper stayed rooted to the spot like a statue for quite a while, until my brother coaxed her to go home. We think she wanted to show off her new coat to her doggie pal, as if to say, "See? You're not the only one with a pretty outfit."