A Year of Carlton the Dogman

Facebook is good for something: This morning it reminded me that I found my precious doggie Carlton a year ago today. Time really flies, doesn’t it? Some of you may know this story, but I’ll share it in Carlton’s honor.

I was such a cute puppy. I deserve honors.

I was really missing having a dog to hang out with when I was in Austin, and I wanted to help out a sad dog, so Mandi, Anita, and I started looking around for a small-ish dog who could go back and forth from Austin to the Hermits’ Rest with me.

My experience at Austin Pets Alive was really sad. The only dog that wasn’t a pit mix was scared to death of people.

I found me a puppy!

We kept watching the Cameron dog pound for likely suspects, when three puppies came in. All three were friendly and sweet, but the white one with blue eyes looked to me like he’d stay smaller. I took him out for a walk, and he was SO friendly. Sandra at the pound (now known as A Touch of Love) was sure he’d be a small dog, and I was smitten by his cuddliness.

Off to the Ranch

Carlton the Dogman got along great with the older dogs, inspiring much play. He potty trained fast and was just a fine fellow. There was no trouble adding him to the pack.

The first day we all got to meet each other. We played a lot. Harvey is tired.

Off to Austin

After a couple of weeks, I brought him to Austin to see how he would get along with Pickle. Well, she didn’t hate him. But, at that time, Pickle still wasn’t feeling great, so all the playfulness got to her. Carlton did fine on a leash, for the most part. And he wanted to play with the other dogs in the neighborhood.

We don’t hate each other; he’s just exhausting, sez Pickle.

After about a month of back and forth, we realized Carlton was not staying small. He also wanted to run way more than I could on the hills. And finally, he sprinted down the steep hill between two houses on our cul-de-sac, causing me to strain two tendons around my ankle pretty badly (they still hurt).

He did enjoy visits from Suna’s friends, like Lee Ann.

And that was the end of Carlton’s visits to Austin.

He likes the ranch better, anyway, and is way too big for living in a place with nowhere to run.

And Now

I must say he is one of the happiest dogs I’ve ever known. We had worried about his eyes, and why they are not perfect, they seem to work pretty darned well and don’t stop him from flying across the fields looking like the dog on Greyhound buses. He was extremely good when he visited the doggie eye doctor, which impressed everybody.

This lady kept poking me in the face, but I just licked her. She thought my eyes were “unusual.”


Carlton and Vlassic, who eventually turned up and is GREAT going back and forth to Austin, are best buddies and so much fun to watch. Our greatest joys come watching Carlton and Vlassic running and splashing in water. The mud spots come out pretty fast, honest!

I’m a year old, and I am a striking figure, aren’t I?

He is NOT a small dog. He ended up the same height as his buddies Brody and Harvey. But he is skinny! He eats as much as Alfred the giant dog, but is sleek and slim. It may be all that running.

This is me on my anniversary. I am tired from being scared of storms.

I am very glad I got my Pound Puppy who brings me such joy, especially when he calms down and sits at my feet or sleeps curled up next to me. He’s a good boy.

Author: Sue Ann (Suna) Kendall

The person behind The Hermits' Rest blog and many others. I'm a certified Texas Master Naturalist and love the nature of Milam County. I manage technical writers in Austin, help with Hearts Homes and Hands, a personal assistance service, in Cameron, and serve on three nonprofit boards. You may know me from La Leche League, knitting, iNaturalist, or Facebook. I'm interested in ALL of you!

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