October 03, 2008

Another Rescue Operation (Or 'Then There Were Two')

Our bearded collie is getting old. Very old. Dogs like that have an average life span of 12 years, we were told when we bought him, and that was 15 years ago.

He’s partially blind, extremely near-sighted, and more than partially deaf. He still loves going out on trips with us, he’s an excellent walker, and he follows us on smell instead of sight and sound. But whenever he falls behind, he has difficulties picking up our scent, and then tends to turn around and walk off in search of us, no matter how loud we scream, yell, whistle or wave at him. So most of our time is spent running after the dog to help him get back on track.

And thus the discussion in our home has been revolving lately around the kind of dog we will get once Boeffie (the bearded collie) has kicked the bucket.
Eddie wants a ‘mean’ dog, Hana wants a puppy, and I want a low-maintenance dog, preferably without hair. Hubbie however, has vetoed those plans, because he wants a ‘no dog’. He doesn’t want another ‘pisser’ (as he calls the dog) in the house.

'Spot Spike'

True, Boeffie has a quaint habit. Whenever we are not at home, he manages to pry open the sliding doors, and piss in every corner of the house. And I mean ‘every’ corner. He doesn’t do it when we are around; only when he’s left alone. Another habit of his is to piss on everything we leave out on the terrace. And so, while reading a book on the balcony, and the phone rings, you put the book on the floor, and when you come back you will find it back in a yellow puddle. The children’s toys, Hana’s bucket with street chalk, the tricycle, anything will do.

Last week we had an electrician working on the balcony, and they had left their tool box open on the floor. You should have seen their faces when they noticed there was water all over their tools. They looked up, but there was no water anywhere. And then they saw the dog, sitting there in the corner, looking innocently at them. They were good sports about it; didn’t open their mouths. But I can just see them cursing my dog and my entire household while driving back home.

'And then there were two'
Anyway, hubbie has decided on a ‘no more dogs’ policy, and we sort of had made peace with that decision. After all, it’s not like we lack animals; we still have 2 cats, 3 squirrels, 3 birds and a school of fish.
That was until this weekend, when on a narrow mountain road near Sbaniyeh, far away from civilization in the mountains, we encountered a white fluffy little dog with a long leash trailing behind him. Sort of a leash. It was more a collection of metal chains and pieces of cloth. We followed it. 100 meters, 200 meters, 500 meters, 1,000 meters. There were no houses in sight. No people in sight. We followed it some more, but it did not seem to be running in any clear direction. Left, right, forward and back again.

When we stopped the car, it quickly came running, and wanted to jump in. And so we let it in.
We drove around the neighborhood, asking people if they knew the dog. Nobody did. We drove to the nearby supermarket. Had anyone ever seen the dog? No one had. We drove to the village police station. No reports on a missing dog. They took my number with the promise that they would call if the owner showed up. Nobody has called.
And so the discussion about what kind of dog we will take once Boeffie (the bearded collie) has died seems to have solved itself.
We didn’t get a mean one, we didn’t get a puppy, we did not get a hairless one and we didn’t get a ‘no dog’ either.
We got a runaway.

What did the hubbie of the ‘no more dog’ policy say when we showed him the white fluffy dog?
So what are you going to call it?” Aaah, Lebanese men, they are such softies. (Or just poor policy makers.)
"Spike," said Hana.

Now if anyone recognizes this dog (the one on the left) as his/hers, and can tell me what color collar it was wearing, (s)he can pick the dog up from my place.


Simple Answer said...

Yup. I wouldn't have been able to pass up that pup. I'm having a hard time resisting the kittens that were born on the windowsill of my friend's house. Must. Remain. Strong.

Anonymous said...

Love you all for this too!!


Nour Kabbara said...

that's the cutest little puppy ever! hmmm... was it wearing a blue collar? (even if i were right, there's no way mum would let me keep it hehehe)

Anonymous said...

Thats our DOG!! Please do not return our dog! His name is Saddam. It will shit in every corner of your house.!
I ran of when I took a hike at Sbaniyeh with the kids some days ago. The children are heartbroken, i told`m Saddam went to heaven and i bought a new one straightaway, this one housetrained. We are happy now.