How dare you put us through what you did? How dare you put ‘you’ through what you did? Damn dog indeed.
So. it began like this. Just before lunch yesterday Nelson wanted to go outside. Always heed the wishes of an animal that wants to go out, for the obvious reason. I then had my lunch and thought no more about it. Then I had to go and complete a task in the home office, and again thought no more about it.
And finally I thought, where is Nelson? Why hasn’t he whined at the door for entry. I looked out the back door and he wasn’t there on the stoop. Odd, I thought. He’s been out for quite a while. I went to the door and called him. He did not come running. I whistled, and again no response. By this point I could feel a slight panic welling up in me as in “where the fuck are you?” I went outdoors and walked the perimeter of the well-fenced yard. And then I walked it again. Calling his name all the while. Nothing. Not a hint of a response. My slight panic had become a significant one. With heart pounding I went to the front yard on the off-chance. No little dog. I looked over at the park across the street. No little dog.
I was feeling heartsick by this point and had no idea what to do. Where is he? Where has he gone? Has he been stolen? It happens. Was he carried off by an eagle? That also happens, albeit rarely. I felt on the verge of tears. I just lost a dog last year. I don’t want to lose another; not since he and I have bonded so nicely.
I phoned Wendy at her office to tell her what had transpired, but she was away from her desk and I was left to stew in an agony of loss. I went and sat down in the living room trying to think of what to do. I could post on FB, you know, one of those ubiquitous ‘missing dog’ items, complete with photo. I could call the SPCA. I tried Wendy again and she was still away. I sat down again to gather my thoughts.
Then the phone rang. It was the familiar voice of my former neighbor, the vet who used to care for Max when we were away.
“I understand you have a little brown and white dog with a limp,” he said. “Well, he’s here.” At his veterinary clinic it turned out. WTF was going on? It seemed that somebody had seen Nelson plodding up our street. He has a slight limp due to his puppyhood distemper so these worthy souls thought he’d been hurt and was lost. So they took him to the SPCA. The SPCA did what it did with animals perceived to be injured so they took him to the vet clinic they use. The one my friend works at, and that was how it all came together and I got a phone call that was possibly my most appreciated ever in my recall.
I drove immediately into town to pick the little bugger up once I had wrested him from the doting arms of female staffers at the clinic. Wish I had that sort of charm. Task done we headed off home. He was very quiet and showed no interest in food.
Then, in the evening he puked his guts out. Had he gotten into something or was it emotional distress? We shall never know. Anyway, he did not have a good evening. But by morning all was back as it should be and there were no signs he felt remorse over a walkabout that probably aged me about five years.
To show how silly such a stress can be, at one point in the afternoon I looked at all the Nelson toys on the living room floor and thought, now what in the hell are we to do with these if he doesn’t come back? Blessedly that question remained academic.
Meanwhile, Wendy did an extensive foray around the yard and ‘thinks’ she found the point whence he departed through the fence. Sure hope so. I am not longing for another chapter of that misadventure.