The Dogs of Newaygo County
By Mark Mathis
If you ever want a devoted fan for life, rescue a dog. In addition to a devoted fan, the Gasper Family has an shaggy mop of exuberance and love, also known as Abe.
The paths of our area’s rescued dogs are stunningly diverse. Take a look at Abe you can immediately tell he was designed as one of those great poodle mix dogs. The combos are only limited by some breeder’s imagination, or two neighbor dogs using their own creativity.
Abe was promised as a small lapdog. Abe’s initial run in life was with an elderly lady in East Grand Rapids. She thought she was signing up for a cute little lap dog that didn’t shed and could ride around in a purse.
Abe, through no fault of his own, grew at rates approaching “Clifford the Big Red Dog.”
He wasn’t much fun to walk. Standing on his hind legs Abe was as tall as his owner. He outgrew his purse, his lap, and finally right out of a home.
Through good fortune and good networking the Gasper family heard about Abe. Deciding it was time to get the kids a dog they took the leap into dog ownership and provided a forever home before Abe ever reached a shelter.
Unfortunately, about 3.3 million dogs enter shelters in the United States each year. It’s down significantly, but about 700,000 never leave with another owner and are euthanized.
Abe found new life, and a new home, with the Gasper Family. He’s playful, loving, funny, and everyone’s friend. Abe loves Newaygo County, and all the places and people therein.
You can often find Abe getting his paws wet at Emerald Lake. He also enjoys caking his fur full of snow in wintery romps around one of the many wooded areas in Newaygo County. We should all live so joyfully!
If you have a dog you’d like featured in “The Dogs of Newaygo County” drop a line to Mark Mathis at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll meet up to get to know the story of your dog, take some photos, and share a treat.