Bee and Trooper spent some time with Love Tails at some of their favourite spots doing their favourite things. This is their Love Tail.
Bee! How did Trooper come to be in your life? What was happening in your life at this time? I fell ill suddenly last year and it altered every facet of my life. I was mostly housebound and often bedbound.
My mum came to stay to cook for me and take care of me and she brought along my brothers dog Buddy who she had been looking after for some time. I ended up spending all my time snuggled up with him or sitting in the winter sun in the park with him throwing him sticks and balls and all manner of things to chase.
When it came time for mum and Buddy to leave.. I was sad. Mum decided that Buddy had to stay with me (despite not being able to have a dog where I rent) and all my housemates and I agreed this was for the best. We became inseparable and he took to city life nicely, charming his way around the little life we led in Glebe. But then came the time to give Buddy up, because my little brother needed him more than I did. Our love as a family for Buddy is wild. I cannot imagine a more loved (in heart and mind) dog than Buddy. He could not be more loved. I remember sitting with my little brother and he literally cried at the THOUGHT of life without Buddy in it. I knew I had to give Buddy back to my brother. But the hole he left in my days was large and it coincided with the loss of a dear friend.
My heart was broken. My family decided I needed a dog. I wasn’t convinced, having lived in the city for over a decade now, I know landlords are not big fans. However one day, out of curiosity - I was googling the crossbreed that Buddy was (he had been a mistake on a farm near the family home and was the product of a cattle dog and jack Russell hooking up). The first search result was a dog in gumtree. This was NOT what I expected. I saw his little oversized ears and classic doggo brown eyes and I knew I probably needed him as much as he needed a home.
It was awkward timing. My health was on the up and I was about to hit the road to finally leave sydney for a while after being stuck for so long. But I called the guy... and that’s where the journey of Trooper (formerly Cooper) and I began... What is a typical day for you guys? What's your favourite thing to do together? Although we are often on the road, waking up somewhere different and greeting the ocean from the van.. more consistently, because of my health, we have a little life, all unfolding within about a 300m radius.
Trooper is a well loved dog. He has taken to inner city life like a duck to water. When we are back home in our little Glebe garden sanctuary.. the days are small and slow. In the morning he does a more extensive yoga routine than I do and waits patiently at the door while I drink lemon water and greet the day slowly. I grab the compost, he does an ultra excited wiggle and we wander up the street to the community garden together to drop it into the big old juicy compost bin and to say hello to whatever is growing there.
Troop is a classic jack Russell really, despite being half Kelpie, and he’s constantly on the hunt for rats and cats. After dropping off the compost and smelling the flowers (among other things) we wander to a local cafe where Troop has become the star favourite. Most days the kitchen bring him bacon or haloumi or banana bread. Sometimes they save it from a customer’s plate, other times they cook it up fresh. What. Even. We do this so frequently and consistently that Troop has learned how to win over the kitchen staff and owners, who were not really dog people before. He has learned to shake hands and high five and puts on quite a show for any cake-handed little children wandering by or slurping a babycino with their nanny. We wander home via the house with two ginger cats and every day it’s like we have never encountered a cat in our lives. He tries to get at them thrashing and squealing and they just casually sit there staring back, maybe they’ll muster a paw swipe and hiss back. Troop wants to greet them so fiercely that I think he’ll kill himself trying. Same. Thing. Every. Time.
We go home and rest a lot in the day and Troop just matches my energy levels like the little champion he is. If I’m out in the van, I might go for a little surf and he waits on the sand like a very good boy. Sometimes, in the evenings we go for a skate to get out pent up energy.. and sometimes we don’t. He’s okay either way. I’m so grateful I can barely contain it.
What makes Trooper so special to you? Troop is a rescue dog who is learning new things and falling into place so perfectly that it’s hard to imagine my life without him. In fact, people often comment that we’re inseparable.
He’s had a few owners and a rough past. He has weird tendencies (like rolling in treats instead of eating them or his insatiable desire to be cradled like a baby) but he’s just a good boy being good. He isn’t particularly special. He’s just like any dog really, each one is so precious and divine I can hardly contain my affection for them. Troop just happens to be mine, so I’m allowed to lavish it all on him.
What is the best thing about your relationship with Troops? Just that we’re together, always. What a frikken legend you know? In an age of nomads and fear of commitment, the loyalty and unconditional love of dogs is unparalleled and utterly delightful.
What do your Love Tails photos mean to you? For us, they really capture the essence of our life right now. We’re always together. Whether we’re on the road or in the local park or at the sea. He’s by my side. Happy to adventure and equally happy to chill right out. You can follow Bee and Trooper on Instagram @b.bythesea