The Dog Pack

The Mount Airy Dog Park
The Mount Airy Dog Park

Most of Lia’s adventures start here. for 18 years I could be found here most mornings. These days, Gypsy and I spend mornings at Wesleyan Cemetery, checking out the wildlife.

Wesleyan Cemetery
Gypsy Foo la Beenz

This is Gypsy, A Catahoula leopard hound with a smidgeon of husky that snuck in a few generations back. At this time she is my only dog. Having lived with Shadda for the first three years of her life, she is determined to keep it that way. You can find her story in Swamp Monster.

Gypsy on the day we met
Shadda, AKA "Viola"
Shadda, AKA “Viola”

Shadda was my middle child at the time I started writing and has since crossed the rainbow bridge. She’s the model for Viola in the series. My neighbor found her hiding under a picnic table in Mount Airy Forest, in February during the rain when she was a puppy. She didn’t know what dog food was, so I had to teach her. She is a teensy bit schizophrenic. I’ve given her many names over the years, from Squeaky Underfoot to Little Miss Mayhem and Ninja Puppy. She liked to lurk in dark places which made her nearly invisible.

Chewy AKA Chewbacca Wonderpup, Master of Confusion

Chewy is my Little Man (or Little Brat) He came into my life one November when he wandered into the yard and tried to play with my neighbor’s leashed (and unfriendly) pittie. I heard him screaming and ran outside to help my neighbor wrest him from the Jaws of Death. He’s friendly, curious, and loves young children. I kept trying to find him a good home, and every time I did, it fell through. By the time the holidays were over and the Rescue came through, I was in love with him and wouldn’t give him up. He was taken by cancer several years ago.

Sam, AKA "Honey"
Sam, AKA “Honey”

Sam was abandoned in Mount Airy Forest when the economy tanked. Many people dumped dogs that year, and those of us who frequent the forest wind up homing them. He was the perfect Golden. Sweet, affectionate, got along well with children, cats and dogs and very healthy. Someone must have kept him crated all the time because his back legs were weak and he had trouble getting up and down steps at first. I fell in love with him, but three dogs is absolutely my limit. So my friend Angie and I drove him to Louiville to GRRAND, and they found a home for him in 72 hours.


Max was my oldest. She’s the model for the cover of “A Shot in the Bark” and the star of “Maximum Security.” She is another one of my neighbor’s rescues. He found her a week before Christmas in the McFarlin Woods section of Mount Airy Forest. She was infested with hundreds of fleas and had sores covering all four legs.

She was staying in the basement until Rudy could get her into the vet. I had just lost my beloved Beez and did not want another dog. Every day, Rudy suggested I say hello to her. Every day I said, “I don’t want another dog.” On the third day, he said “Carol, you don’t have to keep her, just say hi.” I said, “Okay, but I’m NOT taking her.” I went down and took one look in her eyes and I was gone.

Six months later, I was struck by a car, suffering from a Traumatic Brain Injury and extensive soft tissue damage. I was in pain constantly and hardly able to move or think straight. Max got in my face twice a day and made me take her out. I was in pain for three years until finally went away. I’m convince I am pain-free today because Max kept me moving.

Max passed at the age of fifteen. Max’s exploits in Maximum Security are based on her adventures. She was such an accomplished escape artist, that I used the say that when she died, they’d have to nail the coffin shut. When I brought her ashes home, I never took them out of the car because riding shotgun was her favorite thing. A year later, her ashes disappeared. Max escaped one last time.

The Girls, Connie and Nati

Retired greyhounds Connie and Nati are a bone of contention in The Girls.

Kita AKA Drool Baby

Kita was a dog park regular while I was writing Drool Baby, and she is featured on the cover and in the book.

"Jim" with Fleece
“Jim” with Fleece

Fleece has passed on to that great dog park in the sky. “Jim” is my oldest dog park friend, and for years we spent our mornings together. “Jim” now has Chester, who loves to show off for the ladies.


Champion digger. “Terry” proclaims him Mayor of the dog park.


Jackson’s adopted sister. She’s a great kisser.


This gentle giant is the youngest of Jose’s three dogs. I would add the other two to the books, but I get enough complaints as it is from people who can’t keep all the dogs straight!


Julia is Desiree’s larcenous beagle in Sneak Thief.

3 thoughts on “The Dog Pack”

  1. Loved first book. I scroll the free kindle offers. Was so taken with your dog park universe that I parted with $ to buy the 2nd one. Haha! All of our babies except one are rescues. That one is a lab who was given to me by 3 of my former students (siblings) two years ago. What a house we have: my daughter, two labs, three cats. Recently lost the first cat, Cat, who “found” us. So sad but such good memories. Thank you so much for your writing!

    Debby & Johnny & Sophie & Luci-fer & Thompson & Pyowacket


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Murder. Romance. Dog Slobber.

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