What is it about pets? My dog Buddy stole my heart 13 years ago when my husband and I bought him. He was so little, warm and fluffy. Today, he is still an irreplaceable family member who provides plenty of entertainment and heart-stopping moments . . .
6:30 am: Riff ousts me from a cozy slumber. One of his eyes was almost completely sealed shut with oozy gunk from a worsening eye infection. He is not cooperating with my assertive, but gentle attempts to remove it.
7:00 am: I let Buddy, my 13-year-old Pekingese out to take a leak. Normally, he does not leave our yard. So, I was lax and did not put his leash on. Bad decision.
Issa wakes and was pumped. The ear infection she started with on Sunday cleared up. She had a date with her grandparents. In a couple hours they would pick her up from my home and take her to the Detroit Science Center.
My kitchen was a busy place this morning. Issa and Riff both needed breakfast. But, my husband was in the blocking access to the coffee pot and moving way too slow. But, instead of releasing my inner witch and checking him into the cupboards, I gave him a glare and a barely-audible snarl. He picked up the pace and scrambled out the door.
7:30 am: Kids have happy tummies from breakfast and are watching Mickey Mouse. I am still waiting for Buddy to come back from his pee session. I was not yet alarmed. But, I stepped outside and looked around for him. Where was he? He was not in the yard and was nowhere to be seen. Why didn’t I just put him on the leash?
8:00 am: Issa was ready for her date. Riff seemed content despite his infected eye. But, there is still no sign of Buddy. I am p*ssed. Why this morning? Couldn’t Buddy see Riff had an eye infection? Wasn’t he paying attention last night when Issa and I talked about the plan of being dressed and out the door by 9 am? Why does he pull this sh*t?
8:30 am: Still no Buddy. It looked like rain any minute. I felt anxious and sad. But, I kept a calm exterior for the sake of my children. I called neighbors. There was hope for a positive outcome. They started looking for Buddy.
9:00 am: Issa’s grandparents picked her up. I strapped Riff in the car and put his favorite song on repeat. We drove up and down streets looking for Buddy. We weren’t having any luck. But, then, we saw him. Buddy was with a friend’s daughter walking on the sidewalk. When he spotted me, a sheepish look appeared on his mug. If I could read his doggy brain, I am 99.5% sure he was debating flight – to escape the impending timeout I would issue for his misbehavior – or surrender to the safety of my car, which would then take him to safety in his dry comfortable home. He surrendered.
9:30 am: I didn’t have it in me to stay mad with Buddy. A thorough check of his physical condition revealed no injuries. He was just panting from being frightened and from thirst. After letting him get some healthy drinks from his water bowl, I towel dried and petted him. He was safe and unharmed. Just like my husband and children, my love for Buddy is unconditional. He can still count on me to care for and love him even if he runs away a gazillion more times, yaks all over my just-cleaned carpet, or knocks me out with his noxious doggy breath during thunderstorms.