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Best Friends: Donna Cairy
Get to know Donna Cairy and her 100-pound lap dog
BF Donna Cairy
Donna Cairy and Ruger - photo by Marissa Weiher

Donna Cairy, Monroe, talks about her best friend Ruger, an 18-month-old German shepherd. 

After losing their 5-year-old lab to Lymphoma, Cairy eventually went to the Green County Humane Society looking for another big companion, which is where she met Ruger. 

When she adopted him, she was told he wasn’t much of a cuddler.  Now, every night before bed he has to lay on Cairy’s lap for about a half hour or he’ll end up pacing the room or crying. 

“He’s 100 pounds of lap dog,” Cairy said.  

Best Friends is a weekly feature designed to highlight a local resident and his or her pets. To suggest someone for the series, contact Marissa Weiher, photographer, at

Describe Ruger’s personality.

He’s a gentle giant. He just wants to love everybody. He’s nosy and friendly. He has no idea where his body is in space because he knocks stuff over all the time and gets in the way but it’s great. 

What do you and Ruger like to do together?

Aside from cuddling, we play a lot. He likes to go for car rides and get a puppy cone and to pick up my son. I’ve gone to obedience classes with my other dogs so I also like to train him. He knows how to do things like heel and wait. 

What has it been like having Ruger in your life?

I call him my happy place. He makes our family complete. He’s got enough playfulness and energy to handle my sons (Jeremy Jr., 11, and George, 8). He likes the rambunctiousness and the high energy.