These are two of many extremely attractive, kind, respectful and obedient pit bull crosses that I babysit. I don’t get to see them too often, but they remembered being here and greeted me joyfully. That feeds my soul. In the photos, they are waiting for me to feed them, period.
This shepherd cross dog is named “Bella” also. She too is quiet, winsome and willing, but not as joyful to stay at the Pet Hostel. Still, Bella eats well while she’s here, including plenty of treats, and sometimes I can get the sweetest, ingratiating grin out of her. She makes almost no noise unless she can see me working near her outdoor run, then she whines a little bit for reassurance and attention. That’s not a problem.
Polly is visiting for the weekend, and it has been months since I last saw her. She has grown quite large and very strong. In this photo, she looks like she is plotting her escape, though her kennel is spacious and sheltered.
I remembered that she was “unsettled” when she was here before, trying to climb the 6′ panels, chewing on the gate, and attempting to barge out at any opportunity. She got away on me briefly this afternoon… I had a grip on her collar while I tried to place her food and new water in her kennel, and she twisted her body along with my wrist. She lit out of the pen like a rocket, surprising Smokey, and chased the little cat out behind the greenhouse where I couldn’t see either of them. I heard crashing and a cat yowl and I feared the worst.
Then Polly came racing back, and I was surprised that I could grab her collar. But what could I do from there? When I tried to lead her, she rolled and twisted again, almost tripping me. Luckily, Gary appeared in time to save the moment, and though Polly was barking and snarling at Gary, he brought a leash over. Then, with the leash on and a half-hitch for extra control, I managed to lead the big girl, one awkward step at a time, back to her quarters. I was shaking. The dog started eating her dinner as if nothing had happened.
I went looking for Smokey (you were wondering, I know), and she came strolling out from behind the greenhouse… unruffled, evidently, and uninjured!
I opened a can of beautiful cat food for my poor pursued pet, and put her in the kennel building. Then I checked on the chicken in the barbecue, and went in the house to compose myself.
After a short rest, it was time to check the chicken again. As I opened the house door, I could hear an odd sound coming from the kennel. It sounded like someone was vacuuming, but with an added clunkity clunkity clunk. I thought, “What the hell?” of course, and “Oh, man, never a dull moment!”.
Smokey had knocked over my high velocity blow dryer, turning it on, and the long hose was thrashing around like a crazed snake, knocking against the floor, chair, cupboard and grooming table!
And there sat Smokey, still munching away on her special meal, completely unfazed.
I could not have known this morning that the day would turn out satisfactorily. When I awoke at 5 am., I was troubled by a pounding headache and waves of nausea. It seemed as though every joint in my body ached. I felt cold, and weak. Could this be the flu? I’m ill rarely and could scarcely remember feeling so miserable. I thought I might die, and then hoped I would.
But I had to get up to the washroom. That required a huge effort, and our indoor facility was occupied. I shakily went outside to the outhouse, every footstep jarring my head. Then back to bed I went, where I couldn’t get comfortable. I took just two Tylenol Extra Strength and then reclined in the chair in the living room, with a comforter. I didn’t want breakfast nor even coffee.
I dozed for two more hours and started feeling better. By 11 am., I was almost 100%! I did some gardening. Whether it’s flu or cat scratches, it seems amazing how I recover, (“knock on wood”). I’m not cocky … I have some notion that one day I will pay for my fortune of good health. Hey, none of us get out alive. Yes, I count my blessings.
I went to town in the afternoon, made a couple of stops and took a latte to Shelly at work at the hospital . I bagged a couple of chickens to throw on the barbecue at home.
I’ll just leave you with that … I wish any of you could join us for dinner at any time.