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I saw the movie "The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz" but don't remember it well other than Duddy was all about getting a piece of land. I never thought much about it, had no desire for it. Land is what? Unused property. Dirt in summer. Muck in spring and fall. Snow in winter. Trees and undergrowth. Swamp. Biting insects. Rough grasses. Prickly thorns. Rocks. What's the point of owning that?

Yet, here I am, decades later, with land.

It's all because of the dogs of course. It's most definitely their fault. All of them. When I was dogless, I could enjoy the city well enough. From work to theatres to restaurants to stores to friends' homes and everything in between - it was here and it was enough. And it was easy to ignore the common everyday bad stuff - puke, drug dealers, stink of garbage, traffic jams - because I just drove or rode by it all. I was a moving target, never had to stop for anything or anyone unless it was my choice.

Owning dogs put an end to that. They forced me to slow down. Every day they forced me to slow down, to walk with them through this neighbourhood, this city and be part of it. I was immersed in it. I could not escape from it. And that was good and that was bad for all the typical reasons.

I've always appreciated the country and often would holiday in rural settings. Until I owned dogs, I'd never had any desire to live out there. Now, after Barclay, Stella, Rocky and Smitten, I understand the appeal. Whenever we were outside of the city, I felt their sense of freedom, not just in concrete terms of being off-leash and able to roam at will, but there was also an internal weight lifted. I didn't feel I had to be on guard.

And of course the air is better. How could it not be? To take a deep breath of air that is not contaminated with noxious smells and automobile toxins and chemical carcinogens - how can you beat that?

Smitten relaxing at Ducks Dive Cottages

I don't have an idealized vision of country living and I have no intention of moving out there permanently, at least not anytime soon but its appeal is inescapable for me now. We chose Prince Edward County as a place to look and this is some of what we found.
Sky over Prinyers Cove

County road after a dusting of snow

Smitten hanging out inside Long Dog Vineyard store

Typical farmstead

These photos of various for sale lots were taken since last fall when we first started to seriously look at buying property in PEC.

Lot near Black River

Sliver of land with waterfront and old windmill

Large acreage with waterfall. Property sold a year earlier. Sold again recently for $299000. Way out of our price range.

After looking at over two dozen lots over several months, we found what we were looking for. Fields and streams and woods.

The deal closed on Wednesday. Time to start building.

13 Comments to “Land”

  1. Flossy says:

    Congratulations on your new endeavour. Smitten looks so happy.

  2. Biscuit says:

    yay!! this is excellent.

    i don't know Long Dog, are they good?

  3. nk says:

    Could Smitten be any cuter? Of course you realize more land will enable you to have an extra dog or two? Prince Edward County is a wonderful area, you will definitely be 'smitten' if you build there! Congrats!

  4. kb says:

    Congratulations! It looks beautiful!

  5. Fred says:

    Thanks, everyone.

    Biscuit, they're not bad but a bit pricey I think.

    nk, an extra dog or two most definitely.

  6. Lynn says:

    Oh, it's so pretty! Can't wait to see more pictures as the seasons change. Congratulations.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Congratulations! Gorgeous pictures, and the dog(s) will certainly love it out there (as will you, eventually). Good luck with the planning and building!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Hi Fred, that's wonderful. Congratulations. Maybe even bigger plans regarding canine rehabilitation?
    Such exciting news. Do you think longterm plans will include a pounddog blog of some sort?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Wow! Congrats on the land! I really understand. I just moved and if I were dogless-I'd be right downtown in an urban apartment in the thick of things. Now I'm out in a smaller town, close enough to drive into work, so the dogs can have a decent sized yard and piece and quiet.

  10. Anonymous says:

    If you really are interested in a sanctuary, Best Friends does a marvellous workshop (in Utah though!)

  11. Joanne says:

    Beautiful, beautiful peaceful. And by the way, if you ever decide to get another Dane, I think I have an extra saddle in my locker....:)

  12. Congratulations! The area is beautiful and not too far from the city....will you live there, or weekend/vacation there? Are you looking at one of those house kits?

  13. Fred says:

    Building-wise, I was looking at prefab and modular but there wasn't anything I really liked that could meet our confusing and rather antiquated building codes (the Europeans and even some of the American states are so much ahead of us in that regard). So, right now, I'm designing a house and planning out the details with a builder.

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A request

The reason for this blog is to help get specific dogs adopted from TAS but equally important is to try to normalize the idea of shelter dogs being just as good and just as desirable as any other dogs including those which are regularly merchandised by backyard breeders, puppy millers and those few remaining pet store owners who still feel a need to sell live animals. The single greatest stigma shelter animals still face is the belief that shelter animals are substandard animals. Anyone who has had enough experience with shelter animals knows this is untrue but the general public hasn't had the same experiences you've had. They see a nice dog photo in a glossy magazine and too many of them would never think of associating that dog with a dog from a shelter. After all, no one abandons perfectly good dogs, right? Unfortunately, as we all know, perfectly good dogs are abandoned all the time.

The public still too often associates shelter dogs with images of beat up, sick, dirty, severely traumatized animals and while we definitely sometimes see victims such as these, they are certainly not the majority and, regardless, even the most abused animals can very often be saved and made whole again.

Pound Dogs sometimes discusses the sad histories some of the dogs have suffered. For the most part, though, it tries to present the dogs not as victims but as great potential family members. The goal is to raise the profiles of animals in adoption centers so that a potential pet owner sees them as the best choice, not just as the charity choice.

So, here's the favour I'm asking. Whenever you see a dog picture on these pages you think is decent enough, I'd like you to consider sharing it on Facebook or any other social media sites you're using (I know many of you do this already and thank you for that). And when you share it, please mention that the dog in the photo is a shelter dog like so many other shelter dogs waiting for a home. If we can get even five percent of the pet buying public to see shelter dogs differently, to see how beautiful they are and how wonderful they are, and to consider shelter dogs as their first choice for a new family member, we can end the suffering of homeless pets in this country.