Zoie has had a tough couple of days.
It started out with a car ride, an activity which Zoie usually enjoys. She got to ride shotgun, while the infant was relegated to a carrier in the back seat. It's not often that Zoie gets the preferred anything any more. Since the birth of the infant, her life had slid downhill from being the cherished child substitute to being just a dog.
Though the car ride was fun, it was longer than usual and ended up in Riverside, in a neighborhood which Zoie was unfamiliar with. It was also odd that a box filled with her toys, her bed and her feeding dish ended up in the back seat, though I don't think she noticed.
After she arrived at her destination, she was bet by a big, ugly red-headed man, who seemed friendly enough, but was in the company of two rather territorial wiener dogs. That she was left there was bewildering. That she didn't get a decent good-bye was shocking, not only to her but to the big ugly red-headed man as well.
The first few hours weren't too awful. The man was affectionate and did his best to make her feel at home. The wiener dogs, though territorial, were coldly civil. Zoie could not understand why her owner had left her there, frequent looks at the front door brought no sign that her owner was returning for her.
Things started to get worse when Zoie went with the man to Petco and was fitted for a shipping crate. Further deterioration occurred upon the return to the mans house. The wiener dogs did not appreciate that Zoie had gone somewhere and they had not.
As time progressed, the wiener dogs figured out that Zoie was not leaving any time soon. Zoie began to worry. Dinner time was approaching and her owner was nowhere to be found. A lesson in doggie door usage went well, but the increasing resentment of the wiener dogs placed further stress upon her.
It became dark. The doggie door was useful as it allowed Zoie to walk to the side gate, where she could see the driveway and the cars parked on it. Still no sign of her owner or her car. Whining didn't help her owner find her way back to pick her up. Loneliness along with darkness and cooling temperatures increased her misery.
When the man's wife came home from work, the wiener dogs became even more territorial, their usually sweet dispositions vanishing in a snarl and a flash of teeth whenever the wife acknowledged Zoie's presence. Boundries were thrown up throughout the evening, territorial ones and emotional ones. The pack dynamic was challenging for Zoie to learn. And still, Zoies owner did not return for her.
As the evening wound down it became apparent that Zoie would be spending the night in the strange house. She found out what the crate was for when it was time for bed. Her bed was in the new crate, along with a blanket. Zoie wasn't happy about the crate, though she did not vocalize her displeasure when she was forced to spend the night in there. That she was quiet all night made the big ugly red-headed man happy, for he placed a high value on sleep.
The next day was more of the same. Looking for an owner who never came back. Lessons in pack dynamics. Learning the details of a strange home. Zoie spent some time with #2 son, napping together in the kids bed.
The man was impressed with how trouble free Zoie seemed to be, though he wondered why someone could so easily get rid of such an easy dog. A second night with no noise coming from the crate added to the evidence that the decision to take Zoie in was the right one. It is, after all, a matter of adjustment.
I think that things will work out. We will adjust, the territorial wiener dogs will adjust and Zoie will adjust.
Zoie and Buster are playing today, not for the first time, but for the first time it seems that they are playing for fun - not for the purpose of establishing dominance.
Back up to three dogs. I kinda liked having just two, but Zoie needed a home and well, I am a sucker for a pretty face on a small dog.
Thanks for reading,