It’s September. Cool days, cooler, window open type nights. Except for this year. The morning dawned hot, muggy, sultry. Like the rest of this summer the pups and I are out as early as possible to beat the impending heat.
The trail is familiar. I look for herons from a hundred feet above the water through the foliage. An impossible task really but you never know. We get to a side trail and Zeezee pulls down toward the water. I assume she needs a drink so we head through the cobwebs down the wooded trail to the water’s edge. She glances left, downstream, and at the edge of our sightline the heron lifts away from its fishing spot. Graceful elegance powers up a few feet and then flies out of sight, always away. Zeezee sees and calmly chomps on some grass while Elke wades in the stream lapping up her fill. Zeezee never drinks. Was it about the grass or the heron?
Zeezee and Elke are rescue cattle dogs. While Elke immediately jumped in our laps offering kisses Zeezee sat in a ball on her foster mother’s lap. She took to us after a while but the fear was so evident. What happened to this dog I cannot imagine. I am NOT a trainer. Laurie was pretty good at it but I prefer to allow an animal to be who they are. This little frightened rescue has been difficult but we have adjusted to her neurotic tendencies.
Two and a half years ago she would not leave Laurie alone while we were watching TV. She would climb up and put her nose right where the tumor would be found. We didn’t understand. After the third surgery she was at it again. This time the back of her head. Two scans later there it was. One of two new tumors.
A couple weeks ago we were on the way to our morning walk. Zee wouldn’t settle. We got almost to our spot when the phone rang. Laurie had taken a turn. I started back with no walk. I quickly stopped at a park so the girls could relieve themselves. Zee pulled around the entire perimeter and right back to the car without stopping dragging Elke along while she squatted to go. Back in the car she calmed until we pulled onto the road where Laurie was. She went crazy. I left them in the car while I went in. After a while I went out to get them. They had been there before but instead of greeting the aide in the front room of the house I was literally dragged back to Laurie. Zee went around and right up on the bed ignoring Laurie’s brother and sister. She had to see her Momma one more time. Although she couldn’t speak she acknowledged their presence and was so happy to see them.
A throwaway abused mishandled dog. Unwanted, afraid, a rescue with no future. Five years later I realize we are the rescued and this unwanted no good dog is so much smarter than me.