Lucy the min-pin

Despite her shyness, she has no lack of friends.

Our miniature pinscher, Lucy, is generally a shy, reserved dog. We got her four years ago in October from Elaine Hanson, a breeder, who for years bred and sold dogs in Seaside.

Min-pins are super smart and, despite their reputation for being tiny terrors, can be very sweet, although that requires a substantial investment of time in socialization. Lucy was so tiny when I got her, she fit in the palm of my hand. We were renting a place in Gearhart on Fifth Street when I got her; as soon as she weighed 5 pounds and had received the requisite shots for meet and greets, I started taking her into town where she became a habitué of coffee shops.

In case you’re unaware, there are three coffee shops in Gearhart. Although we now live in Seaside where you can have a marvelous, full-on coffee shop experience at Seaside Coffee and Dough Dough, I make it a point at least twice a week to get my coffee in Gearhart. When you work from home, it’s good to take breaks outside of the house. To some degree, I go to Gearhart for Lucy, so she can see her friends as all three places in Gearhart are dog friendly and, weather permitting, offer outdoor seating.

Besides Karynn at the post office, Lucy’s number one friend in Gearhart is Dave at By The Way. As a min-pin, she’s only got a tiny stub of a tail, but her whole hind end shimmies with pleasure when she sees Dave.

Lucy doesn’t get to visit with John at the Pacific Way Bakery nearly as often as she’d like. He’s too busy most of the time making espresso drinks. When she does see John and he has time, she likes to sit in his lap and snuggle.

She has what I call a “big girl” crush on Bella, a beautiful and well mannered vizla who lives in Gearhart. Bella isn’t the least bit interested in Lucy who she met in the post office. Karynn, the postmistress, is a huge fan of the local dogs. She knows them all by name. Lucy cries when she sees Karynn, and not just for the treats she hands out.

Another human Lucy is crazy about is Melissa, our real estate agent. Melissa helped us find our house and Lucy is in love with Melissa. She also knows the sound of Melissa’s voice and if we’re strolling by the Windermere office and she hears Melissa talking, she tries to drag me in.

Lucy can be a bit of a brat when I take her to Sweet Shop. Dogs aren’t allowed in the store so while I’m inside placing my order, she must wait on the patio. The whole time she has to wait, she loudly whines and moans! Once I’m back outside, drinking my Smith tea and nibbling my scone, she keeps an eagle eye on the gate that opens to the street, alert for other dogs. She’s taken it into her head the patio is hers and it’s her sworn duty to screen who comes in and goes out.

Lucy has other friends she enjoys seeing. At ByTheWay, she’s always excited to see Liz and Bob. It helps that Bob is a dropper of crumbs under the table. She’s glad to see Cindy who makes jewelry and her pup Bella (this Bella’s a shih tzu) although Bella is less thrilled to see her. Another dog she’s interested in who has no interest in her is Cheeto, an adorable Chihuahua who belongs to Anne. She loves seeing our friend Randy and his labradoodle, Copper. If they’re on the bench catching some rays, she says hi to David and Lisa. She loves bumping into Sandy who always seems surprised Lucy is so glad to see her.

I feel a bit badly Lucy doesn’t cotton to children. I’m not sure exactly why, but children terrify her! Four years ago when I got her from Mrs. Hanson, a guy named Steve whose mother lives in Gearhart (I believe he lives in San Fran) got another pup from Mrs. Hanson, who was showing and selling two litters. Steve took a puppy from the other litter. He named her Mary, after his sister. For a short while after we both became the parents of a min-pin, Steve communicated with me about his experience. He took Mary for basic obedience training and enrolled her in doggy day care. He made an extra effort to socialize her, but despite those efforts, she seemed terrified of kids.

“Lucy is the same!” I said.

Maybe it’s a min-pin thing.

I walk Lucy twice a day in Seaside. We’ve been known to stroll the length of Broadway and we’re often on the Prom or down by the Cove. If you happen to see us in your neighborhood, please stop and say hello.

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