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My Lucky Dog

by Mellon Tytell

Hunter, my majestic eighty-six-pound mutt, was the love of my life for thirteen years. I was addicted to looking at him-every twitch of his ear was fascinating to me. I've taken thousands of photographs of him, dozens even in the same position. He was "my lucky dog." I adopted Hunter when he was two. He came with that name, his former owner a fan of Hunter S. Thompson. I noticed Hunter's photo in the window of a pet store in Vermont and brought him home. If I was the lucky break in his life, he was the transforming experience in mine. Before, I was a little wild. As a photographer, I traveled around the world, picking up and leaving on a dime. Life was exciting: photo shoots in Paris, Haiti, the Himalayas, the Andes, and even the Amazon. Hunter tamed me. I couldn't be away from him for more than five hours at a time. I had no children of my own; Hunter taught me about responsibility, love, and devotion in a way that was inaccessible to me with "people." -Mellon

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