Animals as Characters

Cat readingI’ve written both children and animals into each of my stories for a long time now. I love doing that because they add an extra layer of depth and emotion. I can’t remember one that didn’t have some or all in it. Even in the pirate story that is still under my bed, I had a cat in it.

Animals have such amazing love and loyalty for their owners and can form an instant bond. We once had a border collie named Daisy and that dog was willing to die to protect us. I grieved for months when she died of old age. It just broke my heart. She was a sweet, sweet soul. Except when it came to preachers. Every time one came to call on us, she’d try to bite him. But she was fiercely protective.

retriever in my storyI’ve given my story animals strange names. In Knight on the Texas Plains, Marley Rose called the yellow retriever Boobie because she couldn’t say doggie. They also had a goat but I can’t remember if it had a name. I’ve slept a while since then. In The Cowboy Who Came Calling, the cats were Mr. George and Miss Minnie. Fraser in the short story The Love Letter who used the hero’s hat as a dog dish. Bandit was in Texas Mail Order Bride. Biscuit was Toby’s dog in Twice a Texas Bride. And that’s a partial list.

horseThen there were the horses—Preacher, Soldier, Ceasar, Rebel, Smokey, Blue Boy and Lady Pearl to name a few. I tend to favor Appaloosas and buckskins but there have a few roans. And I recall a blood bay in the short story, Texas Tempest (Give Me a Cowboy anthology.)

In Book #3 of my Men of Legend series that I’m writing the horse is a solid black gelding by the name of Major John and he loves to drink beer. I have a sneaky feeling he’s going to make a lot of trouble for Luke. He’s an outlaw just like his owner.

I know there will be lots more animals before I’m done. Maybe I’ll put a donkey or a sheep in one and spice it up.

If you’ve read my stories, do you have a favorite animal?

Posted in Animals permalink

About LindaBroday

I'm a NY Times and USA Today bestselling author of western historical romance. I love stories of the old West and the people who once lived there. I haunt libraries and museums and can hang out in them for hours. To tell all the stories that are in my head would take a lifetime.


Animals as Characters — 6 Comments

  1. I loved Marley Rose’s Boobie, that dog melted my heart just as Marley Rose did. I can’t wait to meet Major John, he sounds like a true character.

    • Good morning, Tonya………..So happy to see you on this Monday. Boobie was an amazing dog. He loved Marley as much as she worshiped him. Those two were made for each other. You’re going to laugh at Major John. Yep, he’s got a lot in store for Luke.

      Big hugs and good wishes for a smooth kind of day!

  2. Well I guess I am a owner of a cat now, a stray feral cat had kittens in my yard last year and we found homes for them but I ended up with one of them. His name is Little Man and he is always bring me things like moles and live snakes, leaves them at my back porch steps. When you are around baby kittens its very hard not to get attached to them and that is why I am an owner of a cat now. I had him neuderd and the mama feral cat spayed so we wouldn’t have more kittens.

    • Hi Quilt Lady……Yep, it does appear you may have to change your name to Cat Lady. I’m glad you found it in your heart to give Little Man a home. I wouldn’t have been able to turn him away either. Baby animals just find a way into my heart. They’re so cute and helpless. I hope you have many happy years together.

      Big hugs!

  3. I love most all farm animals as been around them all my life!! Sure do miss my llamas. Now those are some characters. We had 2 geldings to guard the sheep from coyotes! Love your cowboy books!!

    • Hi Teresa…….Thank you for stopping by to share your farm animals. Wow! Llamas would be really unusual in the Old West! I can just imagine what they’d think of them. And your horses guard the sheep. Bet that’s a sight. But horses are so smart. I’m glad you enjoy my books. It thrills my heart that something I wrote touches something inside you. That’s the success I’m after. Keep watching for posts about my upcoming Men of Legend series.