Bernie by May Lattanzio

Photographic Prints

Small (9.3" x 8.0")


Sizing Information

Small 9.3" x 8.0"
Medium 14.0" x 12.0"
Large 18.7" x 16.0"
X large 23.3" x 20.0"


  • Superior quality silver halide prints
  • Archival quality Kodak Endura paper
  • Lustre: Professional photo paper with a fine grain pebble texture
  • Metallic: Glossy finish and metallic appearance to create images with exceptional visual interest and depth

Bernie is part Shih-tzu, I believe. Six or so years ago I would see him running the road shoulder down by the volunteer firehouse. He did that for weeks. It was cold. March. I’d go and look for him but he would never come, keeping his distance at 30 feet. If I talked to him from my truck, he’d stop for an instant, then turn and run away. He was always on the road, moving constantly.

My friend Sandra runs a small dog rescue and has a big heart for strays, whom she grooms, brings to the vet for spaying, neutering and whatever the stray needs, and then adopts them out.

There was no way to catch this little shaggy dog.

Until late one afternoon, I baited a humane live trap with Limburger cheese. I set it up near where I thought he may be sleeping – an unoccupied trailer.

It was so cold that night. Bitter. Windy. This part of the Florida panhandle can get very cold, but seldom for long.

I was up early next morning and drove down to see if he caught himself in the trap. There he was. I picked the trap up with him in it to put in the back of my truck because I didn’t want him to jump out. When I picked up that trap he cried like a human baby and wrenched my heart.

The vet said he’d make a nice little house dog. He has been all that and more.

He still has the wanderlust, and believe it or not, all these years he’s been walked on a leash on the acre. He will shoot right through the fence and visit the Chihuahuas across the street if I don’t. And occasionally he’ll turn at the corner and head out for parts unknown. So I can’t take any chances with Bernie.

He is great with the other dogs and he loves the cats.

There was never any question that morning on where his home would be. The minute I picked him up in the trap and heard him cry, he had a home for life.

Author, poet, freelance writer, rescuer of dogs and cats,
animal welfare advocate, hookbill owner, occasional wildlife rehabilitator, chaser of bugs who just loves photography.

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  • panda65
    panda65over 5 years ago

    That’s a wonderful story, and a sweet picture of Bernie, too. A natural adventurer!

  • Royald
    Royaldover 5 years ago

    Oy – that made me cry, I think he had your heart before you even heard him cry, thus the trap and the concern for his well-being. You had a vested interest in him somehow he pulled at your heartstrings. What a wonderful thing you did in rescuing this little guy! Thanks for providing the story behind the image and thank you for being a concerned and interested canine enthusiast.

  • Diane Peresie
    Diane Peresieabout 5 years ago

    He looks a lot like the little shih tzu I adopted in November. Mine sticks close to home and especially close to me. I call him my velcro dog. Bless you for adopting this little guy. I hope he realizes how lucky he is. Maybe when he turns that corner he is remembering a special spot. Who knows? Bless you both.

  • Vivian Eagleson
    Vivian Eaglesonabout 3 years ago

    Bernie is a cute little fellow albeit a rather independent soul as well. It is very important that there is at least a sprinkling of kind hearted people who show their love by taking in these innocent ones who have been abandoned. Real love is much more than a feeling, it is action. Bless you!

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