In the pioneer valley, a forested region west of Boston, there’s a series of trails dubbed the ‘Northampton Dog Park’. Walking these woods each day, I started to notice the ways dogs had subtly transformed the landscape. Every so often, there were dog-sized breaks in the bush along the trails, always leading deeper into the thicket. Places where human guardians couldn’t follow. These ‘dog holes’ would change with the season and never reappear in the same location. I became increasingly interested in how they mirrored my own ideas of what the woods represent: solitude in a public space, quiet contemplation, loneliness, and the dangerousness and enticement of the unknown.
A heartfelt thank you to all the photographers, artists, illustrators, and writers who trusted us, dived in, and brought us delight, grace, excitement, courage, wilderness, and wonder over the last five years. Their work not only reflects the bonds we share with our animal companions, it also celebrates their spirit.
None of this would be possible without our four-legged counterparts who sprinkle magic dust time and time again, and our readers, who embraced this kooky idea, rallied around us, and made this world theirs too. With friends like these, who needs nine lives?
February 5, 2019