I'm here to break stereotypes. All witches do not like cats. I have two who refuse to die, while spreading kitty litter throughout my house, meowing incessantly at 4:00 am, and scratching shit up.
When I was pregnant with Mooch I started thinking about dogs. We were living in this rented farmhouse of 10 acres, and the Mister works nights - I wanted protection. Big, toothy protection. Since the cats would not so much as chase the non-stop mice running through the house, I kind of doubted they would have my back should an intruder bust in.
I was at my cousins - and there he was.
He was running around with a group of kids, and though he weighs over 100 pounds, he was sweet as he could be. He came up and leaned on my leg and looked up with those adoring dog eyes and just melted me. I jokingly told my cousin I was going to steal him - and she replies "You can have him". She is not a dog person and her husband had picked him up from a box of abandoned puppies on the side of the road without consulting her. They kept him locked in a kennel in their garage, their reasoning being "Every time we let him out, he runs away" Yeah, wonder why??
We dutifully got our American Kennel Society book for new dog owners and worked with him to learn basic commands. But this animal has the most pure heart - he just wants to be good. His baseline emotion is completely in love with us and wanting to please. If anyone gets mad at him (a certain poop explosion all over the carpeted downstairs comes to mind) he is absolutely devastated.
Now, because he is basically a furry marshmallow, I was convinced he wouldn't get the whole "sometimes we need you to be a vicious dog, for security's sake" thing. When Mooch was about 2 months old, I woke up at about 2:00 am to nurse her. It was windy but I became aware of a knocking sound, that didn't sound wind-related. Our bedroom was on the second floor, the kitchen had a small mud room off of it which we had designated as Zac's room (dogs are sometimes more comfortable in a small room). The door was closed, and all of a sudden Zac starts going ballistic. Then I hear the door to the screened in porch off the kitchen opening, and footsteps downstairs. I shook the Mister awake and told him, and he grabbed a flashlight and his pistol and hurried down. He snuck into the kitchen and opened the door to the mud room, and Zac tears into the porch and pounces on a guy who had "let himself in to use the phone" *snort* By this time I've called 911 and they've sent a car out. The Mister had forced the guy outside and had him lay on the ground until the police arrived. I peeked out of an upstairs window to see the guy face down and Mister holding Zac back as Zac snarls and barks his head off and just generally look like he wants to rip this guy to pieces.
As you can imagine, he got some spoiling the next day, in the form of some bacon made especially for him :-)
He has proven himself time and time again to be super protective of our family, and at the same time, as loving as he could be. If I sit on the floor he very matter-of-factly comes over and lays all 100+ pounds of himself on my lap, to get his belly rubbed. The kids when they were teeny lil ankle biters would crawl all over him, pull his ears, poke him in the eyes, take his rawhides away ... and he never once defended himself against them. They were allowed. When we tuck them in to bed at night, Zac lays in their rooms while we read stories, then plunks himself down outside their doors.
I honestly can not imagine our lives without him. We love you so much, Zacky boy.