This is my favorite picture, ever. I like it better than anything I've seen published, or taken myself.
It's of our dog Looloo, and my older sister.
Looloo's the dog that got us started early on as dog lovers.
I always kind of thought that my sister and I were a little extreme in our love for our pets. They are family to us, but to so many others, dogs are just animals. I really do feel that people who don't "get" our connection with animals are missing out; but at the same time, I've always thought people who do get it are part of a minority. Last night, I may have been proven wrong.
A group of us went out for dinner, and when we came home we could hear the children in a house nearby wailing like banshees. We soon learned that one of their dogs had gotten out of the yard and was missing. My friend and I always take our dogs out after dinner anyway, so we took the long route, down back alleys and over to a nearby farmers field, watching for the missing dog and asking anybody we encountered if they'd seen her. It made me quite proud of the neighbourood to see how many people dropped what they were doing and joined the search. Some people didn't even know the family, but they wanted to help. Two hours later, I reluctantly gave up on the search and headed home to bed. I went to sleep to the sound of the young girl outside, calling her dog's name.
Imagine the devastation of losing your dog like that. It's such an upsetting thought, but could happen so easily. We all open the back doors and let the dogs outside. Very few of us think to check our gates to make sure that they are closed; even fewer stay outside to supervise the dogs. But, when you look outside an hour later to realize that your dog is long gone, your heart sinks. I've felt that feeling before when my dogs have gotten out of my yard (before I had a dog pen), and remember it well. I had a rough night last night, just imagining how upset that family must feel - especially the young boy who knows that he forgot to close the gate, and already blamed himself. Or the mom, whose husband was out of town, and who had to keep herself together while calming her children and trying to coordinate the search. Honestly, just the thought of it makes me choke up.
Happily, all this worry was for naught. When I woke up this morning and checked my emails, I found a message that had been sent out - Tikani is home. Their next door neighbours caught site of her at 1:30am, and managed to lure her home with a trail of cheese by 2:00. Somehow, I don't think the family objected to the early morning wake up. Kudos to the neighbours.