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In 2009 my mother had a traumatic brain injury in a car accident. She was struck by a pick up truck crossing over the highway on the way to her weekly Bridge game Almost exactly a year previously she and my father traveled to Maryland to pick up Lizzie, a Welsh Corgi, she affectionately named after the Queen (however we all know that the Queen would not have answered to the nickname Lizzie!) . My mother, an admirer of all things British, had a tremendous amount of respect for the Harris Tweed wearing British dog trainer named Barbara Woodhouse. She appeared on PBS every week in the 80’s . Barbara believed that proper training involved a single sign of affection which  was “just a little pat on the head”, followed immediately by a “good dog!”

My mother and father were both 80 when they added Lizzie to the family.

I recall my mother holding Lizzie when they first picked her up and said

to me: “Amy, I am 80 years old, what is going to happen to Lizzie if

something happens to me?” I immediately responded: “Mother,  don’t

worry, you know I will take Lizzie if something were to happen to you.”.

My mother survived the traumatic brain injury and miraculously walked

out of the traumatic brain injury program at Rusk Rehabilitation in Columbia, Missouri with very little assistance. An impressive recovery! Unfortunately her

pride would not allow her to use a walker and as a result she fell. The

fall wiped out all the effort she accomplished at the program. She could

no longer walk. My mother and father ended up moving to Easton.

My mother was placed in William Hill Manor and my dad rented a house within

walking distance of the facility. Lizzie ended up coming to live with me and Annabelle. I would often bring Lizzie and Annabelle to visit my mother. Lizzie would run straight into my mothers room and jump up on her bed. As I

mentioned,  my mother had a great deal of respect for Barbara Woodhouse,

whom you can imagine, would subscribe to the belief that dogs do not

belong on the furniture without invitation. My mother’s comment to me when Lizzie jumped upon her bed was: “Amy, you have ruined this dog!” My response: “Well, mother, guess what? Lizzie and Annabelle have been on every single piece

of furniture in our house without invitation and they haven’t shared with us which is their favorite.” She shook her head and repeated: “You have ruined her!”

At Out of the Fire you are more than welcome to bring your dog, however,

you are restricted to the porch unless your dog is a service dog. We

don’t have couches for them to jump on, but we will offer them some nice

cold ice water in a proper bowl. Now, that is something that would 

please both my mother and Barbara Woodhouse…a proper bowl!

***Photos of Barbara Woodhouse with furry friends in training.

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