Our Dogs - Buddy and The Bostons

Some of the best people I've known have been dogs.

I have been around Boston Terriers for most of my life. More than thirty years ago, my mother was offered a stray dog that was found wandering the streets of south Saint Louis. This small, affectionate puppy had short hair with black and white markings. The compressed muzzle led us erroneously to believe that it was some type of Bulldog mix. Our veterinarian quickly enlightened us. This dog was a pure breed. An east coast aristocrat, in fact. Our dog was a Boston Terrier. In his opinion, we were very fortunate to acquire one of these expensive dogs as a stray. There was one problem, however. We only had "outside dogs" in the past, and this short-haired puppy would not be able to withstand the cold Missouri winters. My parents were reluctant about keeping a dog in the house, but three decades later they have welcomed a succession of Boston Terriers into their home, and Carolyn and I have begun to perpetuate that tradition.

Boston Terriers are true native Americans. They are one of only nine breeds recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) as having originated in the United States. The lineage of all Boston Terriers converges to Boston, Massachusetts during the mid- to late-19th century. Although the British had been experimenting with bulldog-terrier mixes for centuries, it was only when upper class Bostonians bred the English Bulldog with the, now extinct, English White Terrier that the Boston Terrier was born. The modernity of the breed has a seldom appreciated avantage. Long established breeds of dog were developed either for practical ends, such as guarding, hunting or herd management, or sporting purposes, such as racing and fighting. The Boston Terrier, however, was bred solely for human companionship. During the earliest years of the 20th century, the Boston Terrier was the most popular breed in the nation and, at one point, accounted for nearly one-third of dog show entries. Given this history, it is surprising how few people currently recognize a Boston Terrier. We have been asked if our Bostons are Pugs, Chihuahuas, Dachshunds, and even Pit Bulls. Occasionally, however, someone will approach us after noticing our Bostons in the car and recount how their aunt or grandmother had a Boston, and how the sight of one of these dogs brings back fond memories. Rarely, we encounter someone that actually has a Boston Terrier.

Each of our Bostons has a distinctive personality, as well as a unique place in our hearts. Their stories are presented below. Recently, we acquired a stray Shiba Ina mix that we named Buddy. No one claimed this very lovable dog and we didn't have the heart to turn him over to a shelter. Shelby, Ali and Panda regard him as an "honorary Boston Terrier," and his story, at least what little is known of it, will soon be added to this website.

Their Stories