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In 2010, while living in Lynn Mario walked into the kitchen one day and said, “can we get another dog?”. My immediate reaction in my head was ABSOLUTELY NOT. After all, we had one dog already and she was not an easy animal. From the day she was born she came into this world scared of everything. And when I say everything I mean EVERYTHING. She was a big time nervous Nellie and it required a lot of patience and love to care for her. Therefore, the idea of another dog felt overwhelming. But Mario had a good point, perhaps another dog would be good for our current one and I acquiesced. It proved to be one of the best decisions ever made.

Coco was a few years old when she arrived. Mario’s dad and family breed and raise chihuahuas and Coco had been with them and was a mom herself. When Mario asked his family if he could choose to take one of the dogs, Coco was top of list since. She wasn’t going to be bred again and she had such a calm personality she seemed the perfect match to counter her future sister’s anxiety.

I remember when he went to get her. I had gotten myself into a really excited mindset pushing away any doubts I had about getting another dog and was patiently waiting for him to walk through the door. He arrived with the small carrier and a huge smile. I sat, ready to welcome the newest member of our family and when he took her out of the carrier, she wanted nothing to do with me. And when I say nothing, I mean NOTHING. Coco takes a long time to warm up to people. She needs to consider you, watch you and decide you are a good egg. At that moment, Coco didn’t know me from Adam and she wouldn’t look at me. The next couple days I tried to give her space. I would go to her quietly and pet her while she sat on Mario’s lap. That evening while Mario was washing the dishes she was hiding between his feet and the kitchen cabinet and I bent down to get her and she bit me. That was that! I told Mario, “send her back’! I could not live with an animal that hated me.

Thankfully, we did not send her back. Mario talked me off the dog sending back ledge and we worked out a plan to get Coco used to me. We would take “naps” and lay next to each other in bed for a period of time with her between us. At first she was pressed right up against Mario and I gave distance. Gradually, we allowed ourselves to get closer and closer until she was nestled between us. After two weeks (yes TWO WEEKS) of doing this it was over. Coco was mine and I was hers and the rest is history.

Coco was one of the most loving animals I’ve ever met. She never barked, never growled and cried only when she was really excited when you came home after a long time away. She didn’t ask for anything. She never got upset or bothered you for food. If she were hungry she’d simply walk over to her food bowl and stand there quietly until you noticed and poured her some food. She never cried to go out. She would hold it and wait until you realized it probably is a good idea to take her out. She would happily lay on your lap for hours cuddled under a warm blanket and she loved belly rubs.

Everyone who ever met her (even people who said they didn’t like dogs or didn’t like chihuahuas) LOVED her. Everyone wanted to hold her and “claim” her for the afternoon. She was impossible not to love. She had several nicknames most notably Cokes M’Gokes for no reason other than it is fun to rhyme. But her earned nickname was The Bashful Geisha. Coco had a peculiar habit when she wanted something, or was hoping for something. She’d come up to you and crane her neck out and turn her head upside down to look at you. It was as if she was reverently bowing in supplication.

Now, it wasn’t as if she were a perfectly behaved young girl. She loved candy. I’ve never seen a dog love candy the way Coco did. Mario was a fan of Skittles and he poured out some into a small bowl and it was on the side table next to the couch. On one afternoon, while we ran out to the store, Coco hopped up onto the couch and started picking Skittles out of the bowl. When we arrived back home I was less than delighted to find red, orange and yellow stains all over the fabric of my couch. I am grateful for stain protection and upholstery cleaners!

Sadly, we lost Coco in 2020. Because of the COVID pandemic and because her illness was so sudden there wasn’t time for me to get myself to Texas to say goodbye. I wasn’t able to give her goodbye kisses and hugs. I wasn’t able to get one more of her sweet little kisses on my nose when I asked her for a kiss. But that hasn’t changed one iota of the special bond that she and I had. I miss her all the time and remember the joy she brought. I share with you some photos of this little angel.

Coco loved to lay in the sun. We had a skylight and she would follow the sun across the floor basking for hours. Sometimes, she would get so hot she’d start panting but she wouldn’t move.

Big morning yawn!

She did NOT like getting dressed to go outside in the snow.

Too much time in the sun, you are bound to get a little sunburn.

Cuddling under the blankets was one of her favorite things to do.

Can you spot the chihuahua?

Long drunken night? She is falling out of her sweater!

She knows she is guilty!

The alert look she’d give any time I called her.

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