I bet I’ve been asked that question a hundred times or more. My short answer is, “Why not?”. But anyone reading this who has been lucky enough to have a Doberman in their life knows the real answer. The difficult part is putting all your emotions into words.
Sometimes I even detect a sense of pity in the way people ask. It’s as if they think I’ve made a terrible decision and they want to hear me admit it. The fact is, it’s one of the best choices I’ve ever made and I don’t care if I have to spend the rest of my life defending it.
I’ll never forget my first Doberman encounter. As a kid, I used to ride my bike to the local BMX track every weekend. Directly next door to the track was an auto salvage yard and their ‘mascot’ happened to be a red, three-legged Doberman. I say mascot, but clearly he was there to protect the property. The salvage yard was his home and it was surrounded by chain link fence. That dog demanded attention for many different reasons, but the most obvious was a missing hind leg. For a long time, I felt sorry for him. He spent his days and nights with wrecked cars and tow truck drivers. The highlight of his day was meeting people who would come and go from the property and barking at kids on BMX bikes on the opposite side of the fence. But when I look back on it now, he had it pretty good. He lived in the climate-controlled shop and had free reign on several acres of land. Compared to the stories of abuse and neglect in the news these days, that sounds pretty luxurious.
I have such a vivid image of him in my head. It’s as if I saw him yesterday. I remember wondering how a dog with such a disability could be so graceful and so beautiful – more than most dogs with all four legs. I never did get a chance to befriend him. The owner of the salvage yard looked at us kids as a nuisance and that dog simply became accustomed to barking at the bikes going back and forth. But I fell in love with that Doberman from afar due to his sheer beauty and incredible loyalty. Without a doubt, that three-legged Doberman is the reason I have Ramsey. I distinctly remember thinking, “I want one of those”.
Side Note: A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon a Facebook fan page for Ed, the 3 legged Doberman. Ed reminds me so much of the one from my childhood. He actually motivated me to tell this story. I hope everyone will check out Ed’s page and become a fan!