Wednesday, June 23, 2010


Dogs truly are opportunists. An open door, a left over pizza crust, a soft pile of laundry. If it's there, a dog will find it, use it, take it, claim it. Nyxie did just that last week.

We had just come in from the pool, arms weighed down and minds distracted. Dinner time was underway and the beers we'd enjoyed were keeping us mellow, glowing. Our new front door is not what I'd call reliable. It'll swing open if not shut securely with an extra little shove. Nyxie was waiting for her dinner, prancing about happy to have us home again. Then she saw it.

The front door was wide open. This NEVER happens. We are careful. It's usually like a NASA airlock to get in and out. Careful is an understatement. Poor T, she hadn't shut and locked it as we've told her to do time and again.

I can only imagine what went through Nyxie's mind. "The door's open. Hmm. I'll go and see what's out there". Or was it, "Freedom!! Freedom at last!!". Maybe it was just pure glee at being outside without being tethered to a human hand.

I, incredulous that she would've left, was looking for her in the bedroom. She was on the landing heading down the stairs as Matt ran out after her. Nyxie turned and looked at him, big toothy grin on her face. He called and she came straight back to him. Our good girl. (Keep in mind if this had been Arwen, I'm quite sure that my last memory of her would've been her big fluffy tail bouncing along as I watched her run away.)

T was stricken. I never thought a little girl could look more anguished and panicked. My poolside beers were keeping me even-keeled. I was reeling but steady - my baby girl was almost lost. Well, she knew where she was headed, but I would've been lost. There was no scolding needed. Everyone was safe and together. I'm quite sure the lesson to close and lock the front door was learned. Poor girl - I hugged her and she exhaled, letting the tension and fear go.
So why did she come back? Dinner? An automatic behavioral response to the word "come!", drilled into her as a tiny whelpling? I want to believe there was more. Maybe a combination of these two, but primarily a sense of "I don't belong out here alone". And she never will.

So the opportunity was there and she took it. It just wasn't as good as it seemed at the time. What do they say about the grass looking greener on the other side?

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