Ranger, our German Shepherd, is one of the dogs we adopted, more or less. One morning while I was at church, Keith was on his way to his second home, Home Depot... and since he always takes the back way through farm country, he was enjoying the ride.
Along he came beside a dog who was traveling up the roadway... a skinny German Shepherd who appeared to be either sick or hurt, and clearly had not been eating regularly. Keith parked the van and got out, and tried unsuccessfully to get the dog to come to him. Various people came and went, and helped him. (There is not a lot of traffic on this road in the morning). Someone finally gave him a donut from a package in their car, and went on. Keith was finally able to get the poor dog to come to him, and when he did, he picked it up in his arms, and the dog sighed. Keith put him in the van, and he went to the back and lay down, and home they came, Home Depot forgotten. When he got here that day five years ago, he told me there was a poor hurt dog in the car, and to look at him. There he was, laying against the back door of the van, watching us warily.
Oscar was still alive then, the Min Pin with legs of steel who could leap around like Tigger. He was not about to accept this big dog or be bossed by him, but within a few days, they were fast friends. Never did we see them fight, and never did we see aggression on one or the other's part. They would actually lay side by side and chew on their bones. So Ranger eventually got out of the van and came to live at Calamity Acres. He had been thrown from a car, or possibly hit with a baseball bat or board, according to Dr. Tom, our vet. His hearing was gone in his left ear and his muzzle permanently turned to the side. An ear infection raged for weeks, but we eventually got it under control. He still, five years later, will need surgery at some point on his mouth.
He is faithful and true, he patrols our fence, meets us at the gate, and leads us home every night. He is our burglar alarm. He has put up with Lilly, who dominated him from the start... with Addie Mae, with Hannah, with Abby. He tolerated Nickie, who picked on him, and Gwen. He is terrified of little Jenny! He is our most handsome boy, and is not comfortable leaving, so rarely goes anywhere with us. He likes to stay home and take care of his place, and we like him here.