of the canine variety. Yes, I thought I’d spice things up a bit.
Dogs don’t remember anything for over 45 minutes. My dog knows when I’m gone and stays at the door to greet me. She’s 10.5 years old and remembers things from day one. Let’s hope she doesn’t remember the first five weeks of her life because they must have been abysmal before we adopted her.
She may not remember having her hips taken out at six and nine months of age because Cousin Val put her out, so even now she loves Cousin Val! Yes, Zoe grew her own hips because she’s 30 lbs. and back then they didn’t make titanium hips for dogs under 60 lbs.
A few weeks ago I ordered a game for her, educational of course. It has an MDF base and six pegs and three sliders, one slider is curved. I place a Trader Joe’s Charlee Bear treat under each challenge and it took her a few minutes the first time. She still does the pegs first then the sliders and gets it done with her nose in 45 seconds, then bats it around with her paws because there are no more treats.
Yesterday I was at Whole Foods and saw a kid’s puzzle with handles on pieces to plug in. Zoe’s puzzle is at least 10X more complicated and she can do it in 45 seconds. Talk to me about remembering, again. One never does something fun (a ride in the car) with a herding dog before it becomes their “routine.” Beware.
The second myth is that dogs don’t care. My old dog befriended our 18 month-old cousin who was very ill. N would take off her socks and Chani would take them and place them between her paws and watch as N took a nap on our living room carpet. Chani was freaked out by N at first but warmed up to her loving nature in an hour and we took long walks together with N in the stroller. A few weeks after her visit with us, N died. Chani lost her shelter fear of children and men in uniform (she was abused by a deputy sheriff) and became friends with everyone at the park. Chani died in 2001 and all the neighbors donated a tree to the park in her memory, that I check on Google Earth. Looks good!
Zoe was called on by a cat named Meow Meow, a stray who called on up to 12 residents for food. I never gave her any for months. She came to call on pup Zoe. We had a parade with me, Zoe, MM and a mockingbird who was trying to kill MM. We were the protection detail. Zoe has always liked cats, doesn’t raise an eyebrow to birds but loves to chase squirrels and recently, bunnies. She has killed a couple of mice but didn’t eat them because my husband threw them over the fence.
At an event I attended alone, folks new to me asked me if I was Zoe’s mom. I am. I’ve been blessed to have two dogs over many years, each for ten years now. They are very different and I love them both. I’ve an angel ornament I took the string off. It’s of a Golden Retriever and I’ve it, a picture of my first cat Nathan which means Gift, and me as a one year-old in a pink snowsuit thinking about my future looking at me right now at my desk.
I’ve spent over 20 years on adoption, spay/neuter and other issues. To me, a pet is a family member. Years ago my in-laws said they’d clear a goat pen and I told my husband I wouldn’t be there for the big holiday. Now Zoe has free rein of their household and even gets up on big Joe’s side of the couch to watch him come in from feeding the cattle on the 4X4. She is expected to catch any errant crumbs from our three day cooking extravaganza. I couldn’t ask for a better dog. Or husband, in-laws et al! Cheers, Dee