OK, first the sad part: My K9 friend and companion of the last dozen years, Sadie, passed away the Wednesday before Easter. Old age. At twelve. Well, that’s 84 in dog years, but still. Sadie was my dog, the first pup I’ve had who didn’t tend to favor my wife, Jeannie. That makes this doubly hard. I really miss her.

But, this past weekend, Jeannie and I picked up a couple of rescue dogs who have set the entire household on end. There’s more energy within our four walls today than there’s been in several decades.

The causes are somewhere around 15 pounds each and named Cisco and Cindy. They’re a bonded pair of miniature poodles (bonded, not mated; they’re correctly spayed/neutered) who are clearly inseparable whatever they’re doing: Walking me, eating dinner from the same bowl, or getting cuddled (one on each side of me). They share the same Costco dog bed/pillow at night — well, they are small.

But wow! Are they ever full of life. When I first got Sadie, back in 2005, I thought she was fast when she put on the afterburners to chase a squirrel. Well, these little guys could give her a run for her money, despite being a fifth her size! Fast. And apparently, no ability to downshift. Walking them is … interesting.

Very different personalities, too. Cisco is normally a shy little boy, but this morning he thought nothing of accepting an ear scratch from a stranger on the walking path. Meanwhile, Cindy, who’s usually Mama-in-charge, hung back. Sensible, but weird.

And they’re both apparently afraid of the rain. Wouldn’t go out this afternoon to save their lives. I’m sure there’s some deep, psychological reason for this, but given the length of Seattle’s Rain Festival (365 days) it could be a problem soon. Guess we’ll have to take it as it comes.

So where am I going with this? Nowhere. Just sharing that I have a pair of new friends who are running me ragged. I already love them dearly (even though I will miss Sadie forever and a day … or until I get to the Rainbow Bridge) and thank heaven they were saved from their high-kill California shelter.

Oh, and they’re not puppies, the title of this piece notwithstanding; Cindy is 6 and Cisco is 4. Hopefully, they’ll be with me well past their 84th birthdays.