spirit flows thru -- Alison Rittger's spiritual reflections on finding the holy in the daily

National Dog Day


PictureAsleep and it's National Dog Day! A.Rittger
National Dog Day almost came and went without me. We were just not tuned in. But when my one and only read an email from Roverdotcom, I heard her exclaim, "OMD!" and then she leashed me and we took  a walk to celebrate. We even lingered a little longer than usual at a favorite tree. She hinted that we might spend that National Dog Day afternoon streaming dog movies on Netflix. I was willing, but voted no on Lassie. That dog set the bar too high on heroics. Small dogs (like me) especially rescued dogs (like me) often do more cowering than towering acts of bravery. Lassie isn't even aggressive like small rescued dogs.

After mulling over the 12 possible films we could have streamed, we did not watch any movies. In fact, I spent part of the day crated and alone. Don't read this as a complaint. Those who matter most to us need some time apart from us. I have noticed that when my one and only comes back from wherever she's gone, she is totally appreciative of my single-minded attention. Clearly, she doesn't get that from the two-leggeds she spends time with. Except perhaps from her therapist which is only once a week. I have visited this therapist, but never had my trauma treated directly. In a veterinary hospital, I had  hernia surgery. Also the doctor snipped me so I could be adopted. I don't remember this, but I heard talk at Animal Control and guessed it was about me.

I am not the first animal in the family to have been rescued. My one and only's oldest son took in two pit bulls, Leeloo and Otto. Leeloo came from the San Francisco SPCA. Otto was taken off the streets in Oakland and passed around until the news of his needing a home reached that son and his wife via company email. They took Leeloo to meet Otto and nobody bit anybody, so Otto got to go home with them. My one and only's youngest son rescued quite a few animals himself, even when he was growing up and living with my one and only, long before I came on the scene. I have heard stories of him bringing home animals he met while skateboarding as if it he were certain they could move in. I believe several of those dogs were very big. One had seven puppies that chewed through cushions in a room where they were being kept. I would not do that. But I did eat through my duck toy and it had to be restuffed and sewed up several times. The son in the Philippines has a pit bull too, although I am not sure if he was rescued. That son also has a cat. I have met the son but not his animals, although he showed me pictures.

To tell the truth, I have used the fact of my rescue as an excuse for being aggressive. But I sense change is in the air because we watched a rerun of The Dog Whisperer, and my one and only perked up. The dog was a chihuahua with bad biting behavior, sort of like the way I am with other animals, pant cuffs, men moving fast minding their own business. Almost anything launches me.  I am small but untrustworthy. Until Cesar Millan showed up on late night TV, I had no incentive to be any different. If my one and only allows me to be leader of the pack and substitutes affection for discipline, who am I to object? Will she change just because Cesar says my behavior is her fault? What about setting the pace? Going in and out of doors first? Will I not get to stop at every tree and hydrant on our morning walk? What about pulling on the leash to show her where I want to go? Will I have to wait to be invited to sit on her lap?  What will happen next? 

Linda Posner
8/30/2015 12:33:54 am

Darling, engaging...true!

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