My husband and I have always had cats, but now that we are semi-retired and our cats have all died, our daughter decided that we should have a dog. She even found one for us among her schoolteacher friends, and suddenly we are owners of a 7-year-old black Lab named Breezy.

This may seem remarkable, but actually our last cats came from our children, who moved around a lot and had to instantly pass on the cats they loved to a good home – that is, our home. Now, in the mornings I walk the dog around our neighborhood and have discovered things I would never had noticed before:

The bird that seems to be saying “bree-zee, bree-zee” (or is it saying, “fee-bee, fee-bee?”); the drains, those dark holes near the road, which exhibit the most interesting smells that make you wonder what creature makes its home there; the special grass that smells so delightful that Breezy must roll in it and get it all over her body.

I have made the acquaintance of a large number of dogs in our neighborhood: Chalee, the beautiful, white, soulful, large dog who plods along the street; the little yappy dog who screams at us when we pass her house; the beautiful blonde dogs next door who look like their owner, to name a few. Oh, and, of course, the owners of the dogs who share their treats with Breezy when she begs beneath their treat bags.

And then there are the walks on Kennebunk beach in the evening. Breezy gets to the beach and races to the water.

She jumps the waves and seems to express my love of living near the ocean. Admittedly, we have to rinse and dry her off when we get home, but the cold water doesn’t bother her and she never gets tired of her plunge.

My friend recently said, “Whenever I see your beautiful dog, I think about how wonderful she is and rejoice that I don’t have a dog.”

My response was, “Oh, what we do for love.” But it isn’t just that I love my husband and daughter. I also love and am loved by this new creature in my life, Breezy, the big black Lab.

— Special to the Telegram