Hamish, the terrier in “Warmth”

Hamish the terrier is modeled after our Irish terrier, Fergus. When our daughter turned 18, a friend of hers adopted a young terrier from our local humane society and gave it to Emily, who was living with us at the time. We already had an adopted Rottweiler/Lab mix and didn’t feel we wanted a second dog in the house. Fortunately, the new terrier was so cute and had so much personality that he won us over and he stayed.

Our daughter had named the terrier Tucker. When I met him, he said, “That girl calls me Tucker but my real name is Fergus.” Well, when a fella tells you his name there’s nothing else needs saying.

When Emily moved out about a year after Fergus came to live with us, we let her go because that’s what you do with your children—send them out into the world—but Fergus had to stay. My wife and I couldn’t let him go.

Fergus has been with us now for more than 10 years and has been a joy to have around the house, to snuggle up close and watch TV with, to travel with, and to get out and walk our five or more miles a day with.

April Sage, who did such fabulous illustrations for Stories from Potomac County, used a picture of Fergus as the model for Hamish when she illustrated “Warmth.” Fergus, like Hamish, loves his bedtime treats.

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