09 September 2009

Dog Days and Beirut Nights

Current mood: cheerful

Actions speak louder than words
You gotta show us something
My heart is missing some pieces
I need this puzzle put together again
~ ‘Damaged’ by Danity Kane

Due to the new time limits on Pandora, I am no longer able to listen to it all day, every day, at work. With only 40 hours to use throughout the entire month, I have been forced to search for new entertainment avenues. Luckily, my skills with the inter webs are conducive for precisely this type of challenge. Thanks to the masterminds at windowsmedia.com, I have a full range of free streaming radio stations in which to partake. Users can search by category or just choose one of the ‘Editors’ Picks’. I found myself tempted by the latter and on a whim selected ‘Beirut Nights’. I am not all that familiar with the hoppin’ night life of the inhabitants of Beirut, Lebanon. Apparently, based on this particular radio station, they are a hot and sassy bunch. Not only do I get to hear some great music – but I am learning Arabic (kind of). Unfortunately, I have absolutely no idea what I am actually listening to.

*Abrupt Transition to a New Topic*

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about Elizabeth (aka Ebie). Her story is a tumultuous one. I wanted a pug puppy. We had contacted a reputable breeder and were ready to purchase one when a coworker mentioned that the shelter where she volunteered had just picked up a pug mix. Here is what she told us:

- It’s an adult female
- Suspected puppy mill escapee
- Has heartworm and needs to be spayed
- The shelter will put her down in the next few days if a family cannot be found for her

The twins and I went that evening to the shelter to meet the sick dog. When we arrived, there was this way too skinny, black brindle colored creature. She was very energetic for something so sick, which should have been my first warning that she would end up being a spaz! The lady at the shelter explained that if we agreed to adopt her, the shelter would pay for the heartworm treatment. Then, if she survived the treatment, which is comparable to chemotherapy, the shelter would pay for the spay as well.

The kids loved her; but I wasn’t sure that taking on a sick dog, then having her house confined for an additional couple of months after the treatments would be feasible. As we were leaving, I let the woman know I’d call her in the morning. Almost as an afterthought, she added, ‘One more thing, she needs to be in a yard with a privacy fence, since she can climb chain link.’ Wonderful!

Obviously, we adopted her and she survived the treatment. Then for two months she was in her kennel or in my lap at least 23 hours a day. She was not permitted to run around or do anything strenuous for fear her heart would give out. Time passed, and before I knew it, she was escaping our yard on a regular basis, either by climbing the 4 foot chain link fence (which we witnessed and videotaped) or by digging a hole under the fence (which we routinely filled in). When she bolted from the yard, she ran really fast – like she had a very important place to be. I’d yell, ‘Elizabeth’ and she’d stop in mid-sprint, turn around, and come running back as fast as she took off. She’d jump into my arms as if she had been gone for days.

Things haven’t changed much in the past 6 years. She still loves to dig holes under the fence. She understands very basic commands, ‘sit’, ‘bed’, ‘crate’, ‘to me’. Whether she will obey those commands is left up to her. She has to sleep with a human or else she will whine and yelp. She hates thunder storms and tries to scare the lightning away with incessant barking. She doesn’t like the dark. She will eat pretty much anything – which has caused some emergency vet issues. She is fearless against other dogs – even when they are bigger than her (and most are). She loves people, is great with children, and will sit in your lap if it is available, regardless of how many times she is pushed down.

Recent DNA tests have revealed that she does indeed have some pug genes; but is primarily a Boston terrier. There is no dog I have ever known that is as loyal and loving as Elizabeth. She may be a pain in the ass and extremely hyperactive – but she can be counted on to make her ‘family’ feel needed and cherished. Plus, in the winter, she is ultra-warm and will lay on my cold feet. I am so blessed to have found such a wonderful 4-legged companion. I hope that everyone feels this way about their own fur-babies.

PERSONAL NOTE: I am so excited for Vegas!!! We will have a blast!


Eidetic Vision

Main Entry: ei·det·ic Pronunciation: I-'det-ik Function: adjective : marked by or involving extraordinarily accurate and vivid recall especially of visual images - an eidetic memory Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, © 2002 Merriam-Webster, Inc.