Dog Rescue Stories and a Poem
Ten year-old Bucky had recently suffered through heartworm treatment and was supposed to stay quiet for the weeks that followed. With one 80 pound dog in the family already, we hadn't expected to add a second. But there was never a thought of leaving the hungry, frightened dog in the culvert where he was hiding.
Once Slick came along, Bucky began teaching him the rules of the house. She showed him how to sneak up on delivery drivers and how to charge the mailman when he dropped the bills in the mail slot. Slick had a few tricks of his own and shared his talent for catching treats in mid air.
With 2 enormous dogs already in the family, we hadn't considered adding any more dogs.
While we worked out in the country building a pole barn, this scrawny little stray dog inched closer and closer, testing if we were friendly. With a matted coat full of burrs and her ribs showing, it was clear she'd already had a litter of puppies. Covered with ticks and missing a few teeth, it was clear she was homeless.
The next weekend when we returned, she was waiting for us at the driveway. We arranged for a neighbor to feed her until we could get her to the vet for an exam and vaccinations.
Once she got a clear bill of health, she joined our rapidly growing family.
Buckwheat lived for six more years reaching the ripe old age of sixteen. When she finally crossed the Rainbow Bridge it was a blessing to have Lady to comfort Slick. But tragedy was right around the corner. Within 6 months, Lady contracted Ehrlichia, a tick borne disease, also known as hemorrhagic fever. She was only five when she passed away.
Slick took the loss hard, suffering separation anxiety when we would leave the house along with bouts of coughing and wheezing when we would return. It was clear he needed a friend.
The Humane Society on the way home was where we began looking for a companion for him. It was tough choosing just the right one from the many abandoned dogs there. But we were in luck.
Bucky, Slick and Lady
We were the first to show up that Saturday morning arriving before the pound even opened. They had several dogs that were potential candidates for adoption.
There was a Chow puppy that looked a lot like Lady. She was irresistible with golden eyes and an abundance of soft blonde fur. Adoption paperwork completed, we made a stop at the vet's office on the way home where she was an immediate hit with the staff and other dog owners.
Three Dog Nights
It was three years before another stray would find their way into our family. One day driving home from work, I spotted a pair of dogs running beside the busy highway near our house. I pulled into the rest area, where two wet and very friendly dogs came up to the truck. They feasted on the dry kibble I keep stashed under the driver's seat. One of the dogs stuck around and, eventually, got in the truck and rode home with me.
When I arrived at the house, the husband was headed out of the driveway taking Slick to the vet. He had hurt his leg and couldn't walk. We both looked up and saw the grass between our house and the neighbors was on fire. Out in the country, we depend on a volunteer fire department. The neighbors were already gathering to fight the blaze from a cigarette tossed into the dry grass.
Suddenly, there were three dogs in the household.
Slick and Buddy
Buddy and Dolly
Dolly Joe, Buddy Lee, and Cookie
Cookie's First Meal
Cookie came along just after Thanksgiving Day, 2000, adding one more to the family of pets. She was running with a gang of street dogs in the neighborhood, hiding out in an abandoned mobile home. Our neighbor called and asked if we had room for another one. He'd rescued two dogs that day and with five dogs already, needed to find her a home. Someone else adopted her litter mate, Nicole.
When she first came, she was leery of the other three, unused to having regular meals served in a bowl. When she first saw the bowl full of kibble, she stuck her nose into the food with such enthusiasm that kibble flew out scattering on the floor. None of the other three dogs even noticed. They just calmly munched their dinners and paid her no heed. It took a while for her not to look over her shoulder expecting someone to take her food.
The Three Amigos
One day, years later, Dolly collapsed in the back yard and couldn't get up.The vet said she had a tumor on her spleen that was likely malignant. At fourteen, he didn't recommend surgery.
It took only a couple of months for her to succumb to the tumor during which she showed incredible stamina and a kind temperament. She quietly passed away in her daddy's arms at home on a Sunday morning.
Ode to Dolly Joe
From the Pound my Dolly came.
We'd already picked a name.
Husband has himself to blame, Dolly.
Came to us as just a pup.
It was fun to pick her up.
Never was she late for sup, Dolly.
She was Queen of our back yard.
She bossed Slick which wasn't hard.
Bitey teeth that cut like shards, Dolly
Dolly liked to chew a rag.
Tug-o-war was sure a gag.
Slept with it in times of lag, Dolly.
Also known as Stinker-butt.
Named by Daddy, such a nut.
Loved her though she was a mutt, Dolly.
Queen of all that she surveyed
Turned me into her own maid.
Fetch my dinner, get it made, Dolly.
When our Slick tore up his knee
I had just found Buddy Lee
Dolly welcomed him with glee, Dolly.
Dolly liked to sniff the snow
We'd first called her "Dolly NO"
Changed with time to Dolly Joe, Dolly.
Some would say she's just a dog.
Watch her run and chase that frog.
Stubborn as a mother hog, Dolly.
Brother gave me his best tip.
Always keep stiff upper lip.
Never let emotions slip, Dolly
First night here she shared our bed
Hard to fathom that she's dead.
She'll live on within my head, Dolly.
I'm collecting Dolly tears.
May I please have some of yours?
She was with us fourteen years, Dolly.
Tribute to Dolly
Dolly, a blond Chow mix puppy with a black tongue, arrived on Valentine's Day 1995, weighing eighteen pounds. She learned to despise the frequent delivery trucks and consistently alerted her family to their acts of trespass.
She was a dedicated and loving companion for fourteen years, always looking out for her fellow canines and humans. She is survived by her two best friends: Buddy Lee and Cookie. Services were held at the home of her human parents.
Tony and Cookie
Buddy Lee mourned the passing of his best friend for nearly 6 months before he also passed away. It never gets easier but eventually, the fond memories out-shadow the sadness of their short time on earth.
Cookie lived on to train another newcomer, a Lab puppy who still brings joy and laughter to the too-quiet household. They were companions for nearly 5 years before she made the trip to Heaven in 2015.
Now, he's training another newcomer and they're the best of friends.
Tony and Indiana Jones
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2009 Peg Cole