GeneaChat: Dog Days of Summer 2

Dog Days of Summer ~ Did Your Ancestor Own Pets?

Pets. They have always been a part of my family and from what I have discovered, a part of the lives of many of my ancestors.
Many of the photos I have found on both sides of my family tree contain the family pet. Dogs, cats, and farm animals have made it into the pictures. My blog post Dog Days of Summer~Did Your Ancestors Own Pets contains several of these.

The inclusion of the animals in photos shows the importance they held within the family. One of my favorite pictures is one I found of my maternal grandmother. She is about two years old and is holding a cat that is almost bigger than she is. This photo touched my heart. For as long as I remember, Mimi was a cat person. From the time I was little until she passed away, a cat was part of her life. She and my grandfather also had dogs. I remember them having a collie and two dachshunds.

Many photos were taken of my maternal grandparents’ dogs and cats. Truly animal lovers, I don’t ever remember a time when they didn’t have a pet. When she was moved into a nursing home, my grandmother enjoyed the pets people brought into the facility.

My grandfather Ben and his grandmother Fannie with the family dog. Photo owner by C. Hudson - Passey

My parents are animal lovers too. We always had dogs and cats. We had a dog that loved to surf, a cat that loved black olives and brought “presents” of dead rodents and left them on our doorstep. She brought us a gift of a live bird one day. The cat I had as a teenager was very smart. When he wanted out, and I didn’t want to get up to open the door, he would start knocking things off the dresser one at a time until I would get up! My lab always made me feel protected and would bark and let me know if anyone was around the outside of the house when they shouldn’t be. Pets have been my companions and brought comfort and happiness to other members of the family and me.

The house just doesn’t feel like home without a pet, so we have continued with that tradition. My children have had dogs, cats, iguanas, a rabbit, gerbil and we even baby sat a snake for a few months. I owned a horse for a few years.

Losing a pet is hard. Our lab passed away at the beginning of the year. Two weeks ago we welcomed a three-month-old mini chocolate beagle who we named Bella Mae into our home. She is a joy! My grandparents had a beloved beagle named Sam for many years, and it influenced our decision to purchase our southern sweetheart.

So, Geneachatters-
What pets did your ancestors have as a part of the family? Do you have photos or any stories about them that have been passed down?

You can participate in this month’s GeneaChat by writing a blog post about these important members of the family and add the link in the comment section below. No blog? No problem! Tell us about your family’s pets in a comment. We would love to read about how they have enriched your life and see their photos.

Remember that your posts and comments will be part of GeneaChat: Dog Days of Summer~Did Your Ancestors Own Pets -Recap on August 31, 2017. Can’t wait to see what y’all are saying about this!

Thanks for GeneaChatting!

Cheri Hudson Passey

About Cheri Hudson Passey

Cheri Hudson Passey is a Professional Genealogist, Instructor, Writer and Speaker. She is the owner of Carolina Girl Genealogy, LLC which provides research services as well as instruction and coaching though her Genealogy 1-on-1 classes. Born in South Carolina, Cheri has roots in the state for many generations. Her blog Carolina Girl Genealogy has helped tell the story of these ancestors and her research process. You can contact Cheri by email or by visiting her blog Carolina Girl Genealogy. Cheri Hudson Passey writes the Modus Operandi column for Going In-Depth Magazine.

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2 thoughts on “GeneaChat: Dog Days of Summer

  • Diana Mackey

    Although I am a cat person, we always had pets. My Dad had two beagles he used for hunting – Pete and Repete – who taught my two year-old self how to howl. Imagine my parents’ embarassment when they took me with them to the car dealership, the noon whistle went off and I started howling like Pete and Repete! Needless to say, no car was purchased and they never went back to that dealership!