I was out running errands this morning, trying to get everything done before the promised rains arrived. I had parked Crusty and was speed walking to the really good bedding store when I happened to glance into a jewelry store. In the window was a giant Rottweiler, grinning at me.

Of course I went in. How could I not? He was smiling at me.

And yes, I know that I’m off in that I go into a jewelry store for a dog, not the lovely wares in glass cases.

Meet Bart, a lovely Rottweiler that loves to give kisses and purrs like a cat when happy. (Apparently Bart spent some formative time with a Maine Coon cat, and said cat taught him to purr when happy.)

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Are you a dog person, the jeweler asked as I got down on the floor to scrub Bart’s sides and rub his ears and chest. Goodness no–I’m a cat person, I said, straight faced.

And then we laughed, listening to Bart trill and purr. Despite being a dog of unusual size, he was the sweetest softie ever. The jeweler then told me that he and his wife had six–yes SIX–Rottweilers, and it was an off day that only Bart was in the shop with them.

Now there is a shop that has no worries about robberies or break ins, one with several Rotties in the window. We all snorted with laughter at the thought, even as Bart head-butted me to keep scratching behind his ears.

Big dogs often get a bad rap. Small dogs are thought to be cute and adorable (and yes, Diane, your four are) while big dogs are given wide berth. And while every animal should be treated with caution and respect until it has given you the all-clear for a chest rub or ear scratch, I’m often far warier of small dogs than I am big dogs. Small dogs are sometimes fear biters whereas big dogs can be gentle giants. Unless of course you make an unauthorized reach into their jewelry case. Then you’re on your own.

As for my new boyfriend Bart, have no fear, my love. I’ll be back. Any dog that can trill and purr like that is clearly in need of another ear rub!