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by Jo McDivitt

"Our perfect companions never have fewer than four feet."
~ Colette

I have a new beau. He is handsome, mannerly, wears a dazzlingly white coat, and is so much fun. This gentleman never cares how many shoes or hats I purchase, how much ice cream I eat or the friends I select. However, he does like to play "throw the Frisbee" daily, take long explorative walks, and is a devoted advocate of Benjamin Franklin's theory, "Early to bed, early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise."

The origin of the word beau is French, and one meaning is handsome. In this case, my beau is breathtakingly handsome. It is from this marvelous state of infatuation that I must pop back into reality to let you know: Beau is a white American Shepherd who unexpectedly joined the menagerie at my home in the woods.

He has a mysterious past since there were no tags or a chip implanted to reveal his history. All I may assume is that he was trained to sit, stay and was socialized among people and other animals. He had been fed and watched over by my friend Ruby, a true animal lover and kind-hearted person. Ruby cried upon Beau's departure while realizing he could not remain among her four pets too much longer.

As time flies by our list of beloved pets who have gone on to paradise lengthens. Elsie de Wolfe, an original character who revolutionized interior decorating in the 1920s had a pet cemetery at her home, the Villa Trianon in France where numerous tiny tombstones read, "The one I loved best." I echo her sentiments about my departed beloved furry family of pets – I loved each one "best."

This new fellow, called Beau along with a series of other names we are "trying on," deserves a place in my home and heart. Here is a partial list of his name suggestions (all Southerners have double names) from friends and relatives:

Anne Sanders - "Armani"; Ann Graham - "Jacob Marley"; Mac McDivitt - "Calvin"; Mayor Isla Tullos - "Phantom" or "Errol Flynn"; anonymous friend - "Blanco," and my mother - "Rover." This is the first time in my life I cannot quickly pinpoint the right name for my beau.

If you have room in your home and heart for a stray animal to love, there are many available who need you. Shelters are overflowing with lovable pets often due to owners indifference to spaying and neutering to keep the population controlled and the chances of abuse down. Animal shelters are an excellent source when you are ready for a pet. They have kittens, puppies, even purebred animals. If you visit a shelter and do not find the one you feel you could love, keep stopping by since they receive animals everyday.

To find an animal shelter near you, look under animal shelter, animal control or humane society. Many shelters now have websites displaying the animals available. The fee for a pet from a shelter is always less, and the pets are likely to be vaccinated, dewormed, spayed or neutered.

Meanwhile, Beau and I are experiencing a happy beginning. We have adapted to each other's ways almost effortlessly. I am now missing the left heel of an English riding boot and an Italian marble tray has been redesigned in smaller pieces, but that is the extent of our "No, Bad-Dog!" accidents. Both of us are comfortable and happy.

Who says you cannot teach two old dogs new tricks?



[left] The ravishing Jo McDivitt with Ivana Trump!

McDivitt returned to Mississippi several years ago with the idea of publishing a small newspaper with good news features on the wise, witty, wonderful women in the state of Mississippi. She did that.

McDivitt’s dream has quickly become a reality. The publication is distributed in over 100 locations in more than 20 cities across the state with a home base in Hattiesburg.

Articles in Today’s Mississippi Woman run the gamut – something for everyone. The issues contain stories on people, fashions, sports, recipes, politics, music, travel, as well as decorating and much more.


E-mail Jo: CLICK HERE!

To subscribe to Today's Mississippi Woman, send $36 (for 12 issues) to
TMW / P. O. Box 15343 / Hattiesburg, MS 39404.

The "D" Word
Southern Gala
I Don't Know!

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