Dodie’s Shadow has followed her | Letters

Shadow, my magnificent fuzzy friend has joined Dodie Gann on a journey where there must be great opportunities to explore and bark.

The big giant came to live with Kevin and me after Dodie’s passing three years ago. Dodie found Shadow on Pet Finders as a stray from an Oregon logging road. He was a skinny youngster with scruffy black hair. Snookie Tarte and Dodie flew Shadow to his new home on San Juan Island where he was guard and companion at Red Mill Farm.

After a few years of Dodie’s care Shadow developed a thick luxurious white coat. He was headstrong and loved living much like Dodie. The Black family holds many Dodie and Shadow farm stories. Dodie enjoyed taking Shadow for car rides and walks. Once he walked into a Transportation Summit meeting at the fairgrounds. Most everyone just looked and thought “There’s Shadow.”

The off island speaker was a little put off but most of us knew Shadow just wanted to see what was happening and if anyone had a treat for him. In the last few years he adjusted well to the activities of the Animal Inn and our farm. Highlights of his days included eating, rolling in something I needed to clean off and barking at cars, people, quail, dogs and especially Willy the goat.

Nightly he accompanied us on short walks to close the Animal Inn. He took this opportunity to give Willy the goat long verses of growls and barks. Willy reared up and butted the fence to encourage these encounters.

One night when I did not hear the usual chaos I was surprised to find Shadow had squeezed through the fence and was peacefully sitting next to Willy. The next night there was chaos again but I looked at it much differently. Kevin and I were honored to care for Shadow. We will miss his big presence as we still miss Dodie’s.

Michelle Loftus

San Juan Island