Were these dogs meant to be together?
By Alissa Hicks

Carol embraces her dogs Brandy (left) and Ginger who she says are skilled at hunting. 

Carol Brinkman has a soft spot for dogs. She decided to adopt a new puppy to be a playmate for her dog Tally. Through the Shamrock Foundation, she found Ginger, a chow mix, rescued as one of a litter of stray dogs found wandering in the downtown area. Ginger is now almost 13, but Tally has since passed.

“I went back and forth on getting another dog for Ginger, but I wanted to wait until I found the right size, age, disposition, and temperament that would match with Ginger’s. I fostered a few dogs, and Ginger seemed to enjoy the company, which spurred my decision to begin looking,” says Carol.

A former reference librarian at the University of Louisville, Carol now volunteers twice a week at the Kentucky Humane Society, helping the photographer take pictures of the new pets they receive. “We hope that a good profile of these animals will help them get adopted. It’s not always easy though – try getting eight kittens in a basket to all look in the same direction at once!”

That is when fate stepped in. “I was leaving work one day at the Humane Society, and a new group of pets had just arrived. I glanced over at them and for a moment thought I saw Ginger in the mix. I took another look and was shocked by how identical this other dog looked to my own. After spending some time with her, I felt as if I was with my own dog. I realized this dog had almost the same shape, size, color, mannerisms — even the same attitude — as Ginger did.

“I decided to go home and think more about it and then felt it was best that the two dogs meet. So I took Ginger to meet the new dog at the Humane Society. They were instantly a matched pair. With that, I adopted Brandy and brought her home.”

Brandy and Ginger seem to have a special bond and get along very well. Photos by Melissa Donald 

While it seems a heartwarming story, Carol could tell Brandy had been extremely neglected and possibly abused. “When I first brought her home, her teeth were so worn down, and she was missing patches of hair on her nose from trying to chew her way out of a crate of some sort. She had a skin infection as well and was very fearful of being held. A realtor had found Brandy in an abandoned home before she was taken to the Humane Society. At first, Brandy would act skittish as if she didn’t know what she was allowed to do or not do. She would also scream very loudly if you touched her unexpectedly.”

Carol takes the dogs for a stroll through Seneca Park. Both dogs resemble each other and Carol says
their temperaments are similar.

Now, after living in Carol’s home for almost five months, Brandy is doing much better and loves to be petted. She follows Ginger’s lead at times and is very loving and much more relaxed. “It’s been amazing to me, with whatever Brandy’s past was, how she and Ginger act – it’s like they’ve been together forever. We wondered for a while if they were originally from the same litter. They are so similar in every aspect. But, we are unsure of Brandy’s age. The vets think she might be a few years younger than Ginger.”

Whether or not these two pups are long lost littermates, it is clear they were meant to be together.