11-11 a precious day for Heath couple

HEATH — This Friday — also known as 11/11/11 — is expected to be a popular date for weddings this year, and people celebrating birthdays that day might find a shortage of “1” candles at local supermarkets.

Kay and Anthony Carpenter, too, will be celebrating a birthday — an 11th, in fact.

Just not the birthday of a person.

“She is just the joy of our lives,” Anthony said of the couple’s soon-to-be 11-year-old Malti-poo, whose name is Precious. “We always call her The Queen.”

The Carpenters acquired Precious, the runt of the litter, when she was 4 or 5 months old. A mix between a Maltese and poodle, the dog has been like family ever since, Anthony Carpenter said.

When they realized Precious — whose full name, for the record, is Precious Baby Carpenter — would celebrate her 11th birthday on 11-11-11, the couple “just thought it was pretty cool,” he said.

He said he’s been told the average lifespan for a Maltese is at least 10 years.

Precious “still gets around real good,” Carpenter said, although she has a little arthritis.

All told, that’s 77 in dog years — “getting up there,” he said.

The couple have no plans for celebrating their beloved canine’s big day — aside, perhaps, from tossing her a bone from a T-bone steak.

The rest most likely will be spent doing what Precious does best — being a faithful companion.

“Mainly, she is my dog. She is always at my feet or my lap,” Anthony said. “My wife says she controls me.”


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