Madeleine, 3 years old, designer hybrid (aka mutt), whose mix has been determined to be a Terrhuahua. Neighborhood ambassador who greets everyone on the block with a smile and a wag. Can be very protective and will put herself in front of danger to protect family. Has a delicate constitution and a John Wayne swagger from behind. Loves cuddles, attention, and Laser Light! Hates long walks on the beach. Battle scars include bee sting on the lip which required childrens’ Benadryl and long bouts of adoration, and kitty litter removal from stomach which required surgery and wearing a head cone for three weeks.
Gingersnap!, 2.5 years old, also mutt, whose mix has been determined to be an Italian Beashund. Fastest dog in the park, thanks to genes partly inherited from her four-legged mother, Cookie, an Italian Greyhound. Has a zest for life and is exuberant about everything, including giving kisses! Has two extra dew claws on each foot, “worry wrinkles” until her forehead grew in, and one extra tooth until Mama M. popped it off with her finger. Timid around strangers and trusts only the Mamas. Not as sophisticated as her Big Sis, and therefore keeps a Diary instead of a Journal.
Beatrice, 5 years old, domestic short hair feline. Secretly rules the household but has abandonment issues since she was found by the Mamas at one month old. Loves chicken liver treats, hanging out on her cat tree, and kneading bread on Mama L’s tummy. Will fall over paralyzed if adorned with silly sweaters. Likes to help with paperwork and keeping the dogs in line. Hates car rides to/from the vet with a passion and will let the entire neighborhood (actually, city) know about it.
Mama M. and Mama L.: Guest commentator and writer, respectively. Mama L’s thumbs are usually required for typing and picture taking.
Miss Karen: Madeleine’s No. 1 Fan, who named her first and only cat after Madeleine. Miss Karen is a talented artist who aspires to exhibit portraits of both Madeleines in the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
Miss Shirley Shirley: Madeleine’s other No. 1 Fan who is currently interested in learning how to speak Doganese and Catonese. She wears wigs on occasion.
Auntie Peggy: Gingersnap!’s No. 1 Fan. An old and wise soul who always has words of encouragement especially when things are frightening or gloomy.
Auntie Iris: Secretly Gingersnap’s fan, but claims to be bipartisan. A friend you can always count on, no matter how tough the going.
Grandma and Grandpa B.: Mama M’s parents who live in Ohio and always send treats on special occasions. They are the girls’ main champions and defenders of their good names.
Grandpaw Dwight, aka Baron Rousemuncher: An accomplished chef and story teller, the Baron dreams of traveling to distant exotic lands and writing about their culture, food, children and dogs.
Auntie Joompur: Attorney at law who practices that rare combination of compassion and common sense, and dispenses free legal advice for dogs. She is also an excellent cook and should start her own blog.
Amy Lee: Acupuncturist extraordinaire who kicks Mama L’s butt at scrabble every chance she gets. Loves Greece, Greeks, and wholesome nutritious food. Has a particular soft spot for a cat named MeiMei.
Auntie Lisa and Tara: Auntie Lisa is a classically-trained Pilates instructor who likes to yell at people to whip them into shape. Tara is a cocker spaniel with a natural aversion to foxtails, and is Madeleine’s best friend.
Big Uncle Jeff, Auntie Lillie, little uncle jacob, Daisy and Belle: Uncle Jeff is Madeleine’s first love since he came over on his wedding day to say hello. Gingersnap!, however, is completely frightened of him and peed on Mama L (while she was holding her) several times when he came over. Auntie Lillie steps in and saves the day. Daisy and Belle are the girls’ first friends — if only they live closer. little uncle jacob is Mama L’s buddhason.
Uncle Brian and Cousin Chester: Both are boys.