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It’s a dog’s life: Looking at paradise through rescued eyes

It’s a dog’s life: Looking at paradise through rescued eyes

It’s a season of resurrections.

But the ones we’re talking about here have nothing to do with bunnies, bibles or baskets.

You see, my name is Jackson, and I’m a rescue dog.

Just two months ago, I was rushed to the Gulf Coast Humane Society after neighbors around the house where I was living reported that I was being abused. The wonderful people at GCHS took care of me, gave me a comfy place to sleep and even put me to work as an admin assistant at the reception desk.

I had a date as a “Pet Pal” on WINK News, and whaddya know… I was adopted the very next day.

Clearly, some pups have it and some pups don’t.

Anyway, I’ve lived with my new owners – and my new fur brother and sister, Rusty and Elsa – for the last six weeks, but I’d never strayed past our fenced-in yard or the back seat of the car on the way to the vet.

Until last weekend, that is.

As Rusty and Elsa looked on curiously (read: jealously) on Sunday morning, my owners slid me into a harness, hooked it up a to collar and told me I was going on my first “Dog’s Day Out,” Florida style.

What better to do on a Florida adventure than head to the beach, they said.

And what better beach to head to than the one at the ’Tween Waters Inn?

They sounded pretty sure of themselves. But I had no idea how right they were until we arrived.

I piled out of the car, walked a few dozen steps and instantly fell in love with everything.

The feel of the sand on my pads. The sight of pelicans plunging to grab a snack. The quick retreat of sandpipers as waves broke onto the shore.

OK, I must admit… I was a little hesitant about that wave thing.

My mom was reassuring as she guided me toward the water, but I wasn’t fully sold. And as it rolled up over my feet for the first time, the anxiety was going about 100 miles an hour.

Once I realized I wasn’t being dragged out into the deep, though, I calmed down.

And don’t tell Rusty and Elsa, but I really kinda liked it.

We walked along the shoreline for a little while before setting up camp on a couple folding beach chairs and a blanket. And while my dad and my human brother, Ryan, headed out to try some underwater pictures, I claimed one of the chairs, dipped occasionally into my travel water bowl and happily watched the world go by in my paradise home away from home.

And yeah, about that water thing.

Though Florida has admittedly had some rough times along its beaches and inland rivers in the last year or two, I’m here to tell you that the water on the day we visited had regained that sun-kissed turquoise glitter that’s been selling postcards to chilly northerners for generations.

I had the most powerful sniffer in the vicinity and all I was picking up was the scent of suntan lotion – not a dead fish in sight – and dad and Ryan told me the scenery was so clear beneath the surface that you could snap a clear photo with a second-tier Samsung phone nestled clumsily in a Ziploc freezer bag.

So, imagine with an enterprising Michigander or Ohioan could do with some real deep sea equipment.

Take it from this rescued corgi-labrador mix, you owe it to yourself – and your furry traveling pals (after all, ’Tween Waters is dog-friendly, and about 15 percent of rooms are amenable to pets) – to find out.

Happy frolicking… peace, love and rescue!

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