A great little soulmate by Liz Rogers

Adorable is the only word that can be used to describe Esther. This much loved and suitably spoilt Schnoodle (Schnauzer/Poodle cross) is the constant companion of Penbank Campus of Woodleigh School Early Childhood teacher and Mount Martha local Jenny Smith. She is also the recipient of birthday cards from her two-legged grandparents!

Jenny was born in Hamilton but has been on the Peninsula for around 40 years and at Penbank for 22 of them. Esther is 13 and spends most of her time sniffing the salt air while sunning herself on the deck, chasing seagulls, chowing down on high quality beef, chicken and dry and watching the world go by. It’s a tough gig but someone’s got to do it!

“She has a bed in every window,” explains Jenny. “But she sleeps on a bean bag in my room” and eats from a silver tray beneath her portraits hanging on the walls. “She’s well known around town and my neighbours baby sit her when I have a late day at school. She’s very social and well behaved.”

You’ll often see these soulmates catching up with friends over a cup of tea and a lolly bag full of dog treats in Mount Martha Village, or walking on one of the leash-free beaches. They’re also at Schnapper Point three times a week watching the sun go down.

“We know each other so well now. She can predict my actions,” Jenny continues. As soon as Jenny says “walk”, she hands Esther the leash, who then carries it to the gate in her mouth. This four-legged friend also knows that as soon as Jenny puts on her lipstick they are off on another adventure.

“I totally love her,” exclaims Jenny.

Right back at you says Esther. With her eyes. From the soul.