On Monday we will celebrate the seventh anniversary of the web site I founded called The Tanner Brigade. I remember that day clearly. Many of our friends were refugees from a site called Doggyspace. We were homeless, but temporarily gathered at another Ning site, which was public, and soon bad dog came into our playground and chased us away.
It was a Saturday morning. Tanner Bub had gone to the Bridge the night before. Our friends had scattered throughout the Internet. We needed a home. My dad was on his computer. I jumped on his lap and told him that someone needed to create a new home for my friends.
Daddy asked Mom, who was in the kitchen making breakfast, and she agreed, a new home was needed. We went on the Ning site and clicked to set up a new playground. The first thing we did was put a big lock on the site so no bad dogs could interfere with our play.
But what to call this site? I am not one to name things after myself. The reason I was on the run from Doggyspace was because I protested when my friend Tanner had been removed from the site. And Tanner had just gone to the Bridge. So naming the site after Tanner was an easy choice.
But what good is a park without friends? We invited our dearest friends and were very grateful when they accepted. Soon our little group was gathered together under the banner “Freedom to Bark.”
We were told that a site where all dogs were given to bark their minds would soon degenerate into arguments, hurt feelings, and rapidly dwindling numbers. But the opposite was true, except for a few isolated incidents, seven years later, thanks to our long time friends, and those new members who joined after Doggyspace collapsed, we are stronger than ever.
The reason is that dogs are loyal, and we inspire loyalty in our parents too. Many of our original members, including me, are at the Bridge. There is a new generation of dogs, like Tommy and Chloe, who are still pups, but will carry the banner of “Freedom to Bark” into the second quarter of this century.
We know there are other close knit groups of dogs, like the collection of independent pups gathered together under the independent title of “Blogville,” who are sweet, loyal an supportive.
Our lives changed forever and for the better when the Tanner Brigade was formed. We have survived so much together it is hard to imagine anything tearing us apart.
Long live the Tanner Brigade.