Whenever I hear the expression “zest for life”, I immediately visualize Lyla Simmons, our semi-resident party girl, bursting through the front door and rushing headlong for the fields! Lyla personifies exuberance, and tackles life with an energy that some would find wearing, but her parents are up to the challenge. They like that she keeps them active and is more than a match for their young nephews.
Lyla is a beautiful, five-and-a-half year old, Labrador Retriever. She lives in Nashville with her mom and dad, Capell and Ellis Simmons, who love the fact that she’s strong and playful and very sweet. She has a beautiful, soft coat and she is wonderfully social – so social that she will always interrupt her leash walks to crouch down in the “play bow” whenever she meets another dog. The family sometimes suspects that Lyla loves Woof Club & Woof Pack at The Farm more than being at home, but the excitement generated when she’s picked up should be more than reassuring!
The Simmons previously had an American Field Lab and loved the breed for their long, lean build. Careful to select a good breeder for a healthy dog, they spoke to some big time duck hunters who pointed them towards Ashland Kennels in Georgia. Due in part to timing and distance, the breeder ended up selecting the best female puppy for their lifestyle. Although Lyla wasn’t expected to be a hunting dog, the Simmons immediately fell in love with their new puppy who, having already been “started”, cornered a clipped pigeon in no time flat to impress her new parents!
Lyla was given her name in honor of her predecessor, Lilly. Lilly was a much-loved companion who lived to be 12-years-old and left a huge void.
Like most Labradors, Lyla’s favorite thing is food – although she’s also fond of playing chase and tug, and enjoys long walks in RadnorLake and Percy Warner Park. To quote her proud mom, Capell: “Lyla LOVES, LOVES food and when we fill her food bowl she takes it right from our hands, in her mouth, and lays it down on the ground herself to begin her meal. For many minutes, after every ounce of food has been devoured, she will lick her bowl for 10 minutes before she is done!” Lyla has also been known to supplement her diet with such exotic fare as cantaloupe, tomatoes and…. paper napkins! However the Simmons have to keep a strict watch on her diet as she is, much to their surprise, allergic to beef and now has to eat a hypoallergenic dog food made from rabbit.
The Simmons will admit to only one thing they don’t absolutely adore about their dog – the fact that Lyla is an early riser who gets up at 5am everyday! Being early birds ourselves here at The Farm, we have no complaints whatsoever and unanimously give our girl Lyla two thumbs up!