Today I broke out of my comfort zone-- yes, me. I stood in front of my camera for an entire session-- since our Wedding in 2014. I decided last month that I was going to dedicate August's photography special to my clients + their furry friends. As a debut for this special, I decided to schedule my very own Buddy + Me session with my second shooter Destiny.
It was so nerve wracking, as I typically am directing.. not being directed. It was my turn to smile, sit up straight, open my eyes, and look right at that shiny thing that terrifies a number of people.. Thankfully it went wonderfully. But let me tell you a little bit more about my decision to dedicate this special to our fur kids.
In 2011 while living in South Carolina, my husband and I were working for my brother transporting vehicles up and down the east coast. One late night, we were on our way back from North Carolina, driving down 95. We stopped for dinner at one of our favorite truck stops, a Pilot in Florence, South Carolina. After dinner, we drove around to the "big trucks" parking lot to meet up with the driver we were following. Justin & I were both driving mini vans, following the car hauler back to Charleston Auto Auction. As we were talking to our driver, we saw a dog just wandering among the big trucks. Justin sparked an interest in the poor guy, and called him over. He seemed to answer to Buddy-- so that stuck. After spending some time petting this beautiful golden retriever, we noticed he had a hurt paw, badly hurt.. almost three times the size of his other paws. Justin asked me what I thought about taking him with us, since he seemed as though he did not have an owner. I told him that I wasn't sure, but that I wanted to check with the attendants before we took off with someone's animal. I checked with the fuel station attendant, who assured me that "Buddy" had been wandering around the truck stop for merely two weeks, and that the trucker's had been feeding him. I couldn't stand the thought of it, so I told the attendant that I was taking him home. "Buddy" jumped right up into Justin's van, we bought a bowl and got him some water for the ride. He seemed right at home.
We brought him back to Charleston with us. Upon bringing him into the house, we realized that his paw was not the only problem, he was absolutely infested with fleas, and ticks. It seemed as though he had not been cared for in quite some time. After further examination of his paw, we realized that we had better take him to the Emergency Vet Clinic down the road. Once we got there with him, they asked us if he was our dog. We said he was not, and that we had found him at a truck stop. At that moment the veterinary told us that they would have to keep him, and contact SPCA to come pick him up. She informed us that he must be turned over to the state due to the fact that he was found in another area, they had to make sure there were no missing dogs that fit his description. We were heartbroken, but they told us they would take our information and contact us after a week to find out if he would be placed up for adoption or if his family had been found.
I counted down the days. Every day. Until the day came that the Charleston Animal Society contacted us to let us know that no one had claimed "Buddy" and that we could go to the shelter to start paperwork for adoption if we were still interested. I was never so excited in my entire life! It was October, the week before my 21st birthday! We finished the paperwork, adopted our Buddy and took him home. It hasn't been a walk in the park with our Buddy, but he is my baby. And he has been worth it every step (and dollar) or the way!
That is why I am so excited to share our Buddy + Me sneak peek from today. And why I decided that August was going to be Doggust-- a month dedicated to your dog, because your dog may only be a small part of your life.. but you are the biggest and most important part of theirs. <3