Born in Memphis, Tennessee, longtime Doris Day fan and friend Meg Howard has always loved animals. She began horseback riding lessons at the age of 10 at the Smith family farm in Germantown, TN. At 12, the family offered her first job helping to care for the farm animals: horses, dogs, cats, chickens, geese, guineas, peacocks, goats, and a pet pig named Tin Lizzy.
Meg first met Doris Day in 1975 through her father, an entertainment writer who had a small role in the Doris Day/Clark Gable classic, Teacher’s Pet (1958). While in college, Meg adopted her dog Clara from Doris in 1976. Clara moved with Meg to Los Angeles in 1977 for a job with the teen fan magazine Tiger Beat, and they soon added a second dog to their family. In 1978, Meg began working for Doris part time, walking her dogs in the mornings before work and working at her home on weekends, and, for a time, helping out at the kennel where Doris boarded animals available for adoption.
In 1980, Meg left her job at the magazine to work full time for Doris, living in her home on Crescent Drive and then making the move to Carmel with her in 1981 where she lived in the gatehouse of Doris’s property, assisting with her fan mail, caring for the animals and day-to-day chores.
Since that time, Meg has worked in television production and as an executive assistant to media executives. She currently works for a philanthropist in Palm Springs, California. She remained close friends with Doris, visiting her each month throughout the last years of her life.