Megan Welsh accompanied a friend to an animal rescue adoption fair two years ago, when she lived in Los Angeles, CA. Even though she “wasn’t looking,” she met the dog she had been waiting for: Mikey, a.k.a. George Michael Bluth Welsh–a handsome, scrappy mixed breed and, according to Megan, “a real go-getter.”

Megan was impressed by Mikey’s confidence, and she was looking for a dog to help her with her grief over losing her mother.

“My mom was my best friend, and now Mikey is my best friend. My mom was an animal lover, so I feel like she would approve, even though she was more of a cat person.”

If Megan was expecting a cuddly lover who would fill her heart, she got that, and also a little more than she expected. Mikey has some special needs around leash walking–he’s a little reactive–and he has huge exercise needs.

Megan has worked diligently with him to get him to focus on her when they walk instead of barking at the things that scare him, like busses, children, quickly approaching strangers, rolling carts, skateboarders, and so forth.

Also, Mikey is an extremely high-energy dog. He requires at least two hours a day of vigorous exercise. Megan meets that need with daycare several days a week, and on the days he doesn’t go to Doggedly Devoted, they go for a run together of at least 5 or 6 miles up and down the riverside.

“He can run much faster than I can, but he’s happy to cruise along with me.

If Mikey doesn’t get the exercise he needs, he can be a real distraction. Megan is working on her PhD in Criminal Justice at the CUNY Graduate Center/John Jay College, and Mikey won’t let her work on her dissertation if he doesn’t get his daily workout.

“When I got a dog, I wasn’t expecting all of Mikey’s energy and leash issues, but I love this damn dog so much that I’m happy to restructure my life around him.”