Friday, May 4, 2007


When I was little, my sister Melinda and I would take in any form or shape of a dog. It didn’t seem to matter if they had been pre-owned or Hinze 57 nor what condition they were in, we loved them all. We never had to tie a rope around a dog’s neck and announce "Look what followed us home", they just seemed to know they were loved unconditionally and would follow us anywhere. I’m sure Mom would cringe every time she would open the front door and see a new dog in the yard. I think everyone in town knew they could drop strays in our front yard and we would take them in, no questions asked.

It wasn’t until years later that I figured out that Dad would load the strays in his pickup from time to time and dump them in the country when there were more of them than us. I remember hearing Mom joke with Dad “Look Ross,” she said, "that one beat you back to the house."
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One of the dogs that came our way was a small, shorthaired, tan mutt we called Chicken. We would play in the yard, on the tire swing or dig in the dirt making mud pies and Chicken would hang with us as if we were all best friends, but Mom or Dad would walk by and he would go slinking off, hiding behind the nearest bush, tree or whatever he deemed as safe.

At this time in our lives we had 4 other visiting dogs. When they were around, Chicken appeared brave, strong and courageous. He seemed to be the leader of the pack, a dog-about- town; one with all the answers; but we knew the truth about Chicken.

Late one evening, Chicken stood in the yard barking and carrying on as if we had been surrounded. After several minutes of this Dad rose from the couch, picked up his work boot, opened the front door and threw the boot in the general direction of Chicken. Chicken proceeded to howl and yelp uncontrollably. He sounded as if someone were killing him; funny thing, the boot missed him.

All settled down outside and we continued to set around the living room. Mom and Dad visiting, Melinda and I playing in the floor quietly and Trey, being the ‘ball of fire’ that he was, was bouncing around on the couch, floor and chair, all at the same time.

Once more Dad got up and went to the front door to look outside. Chicken had been sleeping peacefully on the porch, when he sprang off the porch at a dead run, yelping, and howling and making noises as if his life was over. We all burst out laughing.

The next day Chicken was gone. We were never sure if he left in complete humiliation, with tail tucked between his legs because he had lost face with the ‘pack’ or if Dad made one of his famous dog dumping trips.
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Isaiah 41:10 "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand."


Anonymous said...

Poor Chicken...This is why I don't have pets...They would run away from our house...Love ya, Joandra

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you are home you know daryl can't get by without you. let alone the things you do for the rest of the world.


Monalea said...

Joandra, some of our pets seem to have a revolving door attitude; when someone offers a better home, food etc. they are gone. But they always know we are big softies and will let them come back.

Ned, thank you. It has taken 27 1/2 years for Daryl to realize this. ha ha

The Preacher's Household: said...

We had a dog named Sissy for 15 years. She yelped and barked like that one night in the garage. She was gone the next day and the garage was a mess. Over one year later she returned on my sister's birthday. We always wondered where she had been. She was a part of the family.