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Annie, Author Find New Chapters in Life

Rescued dog inspires retired school superintendent-turned-author for children’s book series

Patty Shafer was nearing retirement and finishing up her last year as superintendent of San Marcos schools in April 2010 when her husband, Cecil, gave her a call. An emaciated, fearful pit bull mix had wandered up. After Cecil was able to draw her in with food, the Shafers decided to adopt the dog, naming her Annie. Later, Annie became the inspiration for a children’s book series.

Annie the Texas Ranch Dog books feature an abandoned pit bull mix who adopts a family and finds a new life. Her owner is Park Ranger Jake Pickett, and together they visit Texas state parks to help solve mysteries.

“Once I started with the idea of state parks, it opened up a world of possibilities,” said Patty, who writes the series. Annie has helped fight fires in Bastrop State Park and, more recently, helped find a missing child in Lost Maples State Natural Area.

Look for the fourth Annie book, Trouble in Palo Duro Canyon, in January. The Shafers, who live near Kingsbury, are served by Guadalupe Valley Electric Cooperative.

Ashley Clary-Carpenter, field editor
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