Friday, January 22, 2010

Ramble On

My dog and I share a birthday, and it's coming up soon. She's going to be twelve, and I'll be forty-two. For you Douglas Adams fans, do be aware I've already celebrated for some time - as *this* year, I'm in my forty-second year as it is.

Anyway, the dog. I found her a bit over seven years ago, after losing the best kitty ever, my special, the Puppycat, an inimitable little guy named Smikey. Smike was entitled by his daddy, my Beloved Ex, who chose both this little weed and a kit I named Byshe back in the mists of time before we ever even married. Smike was a funny and friendly little guy, had a huge bullseye splotch on each side (we considered naming him Hal - and people DID want to poke his bullseyes, poor old devil), and became ill during the year or so after Byshe (pronounced BY-she, he was named for Shelley by way of a kit I went to HS with, whose parents had given him the slightly doctored version/pronunciation; I always thought it was a great cat name) left us behind. Smike turned out to be diabetic, and in his final couple of years, he was angel enough not only to put up with a NEEDLE IN THE NECK twice daily (he seemed to understand its connection to his improving and blooming health), as well as the cruelty that is blood-drawing and testing for a kitty. Trying not to feel a total heel while intentionally cutting your best boy's little nails to the quick for a drop of blood is hard to do ...

Anyway. Poor old Smee died horribly, in the end. It was brutal, and painful, and worse than that dear little kid ever deserved, and I was guilty and desperately horrified for him, and bless him he was a total sport and a fighter and a little love, and to this day I miss that kid, and good lord I'm getting misty just thinking about him.

This post was totally going to be about my dog.

Ahem. A moment, then.

Anyway. So Sid is my housemate now. She was four when my elder niece helped me one beautiful Saturday in September, on the mission to find a dog. She was such an odd-looking, wonderful weirdo she had us before we'd even crossed the parking lot.

That I can still recall the first MOMENT I saw my DOG probably says entirely too much, but it was a month after I got her before I experienced that same cliche' with a man for the first time, and dang if that didn't turn out to be an even more ridiculously cinematic intro.

Anyway, Sid. Sidney. I suppose her previous owners spelled it Sydney, or something equally overwrought/pretentious. The name itself I've never had much problem with, but of course she rarely gets called that (at least not without embellishments galore). I'd already nicknamed her Siddy even before "deciding" she was the one (yes, Zuba, I remember well your being the one to say that if I'd NICKNAMED her she was obviously the one I wanted). I couldn't resist taking her even when they called to say she'd been hurt by another dog at her foster home, and was wearing a halo and still had stitches. "GIMME GIMME" I believe was my unsubtle response to "do you want her, or would you like to wait until she's had the stitches out?"

Without wasting more verbiage on the hows and whys (it's sad the degree of detail I *could* provide on these points), Lolly is generally referred to as La, Lol, Lolly, and sometimes Lolly-ya. And lord is this dog a good beastie.

What karma I could possibly have contributed to the world to gain the blessings I have had of it is beyond all possible interpretation, but this dog is every bit the Best Beastie the Smikester was, and then some. She's so good I won't even bother listing all the reasons, just know she's the Gooderest Dog, and I'm so grateful to have been found by her I can't even begin to stand it.

And someone LET THIS DOG GO.

Sid was four years old when I adopted her. She was LET GO.

I met someone, not so long after I got Sid, who recognized her while we were on a walk. She's so distinctive looking, it's no surprise she'd be easy to place, if you saw her somewhere. I learned from this woman that the previous owners, whose story to the Animal Adoption and Rescue Foundation (AARF) had been pretty weak, were basically snobs for whom this dog no longer, apparently, suited their exalted sense of self.

To break my "this blog will be readable by my nieces" writing rule: What colossal assholes.

And idiots, to boot, really.

Sid isn't a barker, except in the context of her boisterous, barrel-chested idea of a friendly hello (hee), or her even MORE boisterous, and very much encouraged by me, attempts to guard and protect our home. She isn't too much of a jumper, she is very very good being at home alone much of the day, and she isn't a horrible spaz. She's amazing, just amazingly good with CHILDREN - which of course was Criterion Number One, for me, when taking my then four-year-old compatriot out for a dog-shopping expedition. She's always been a wonderful old lying-quietly-at-your feet dog.

She's had some training, that much has always been obvious.

She's BEAUTIFUL. "Aristocratic", one lady said of her, one time at the Pet Smart (just as she responded by squatting for a pee in the middle of the aisle - heh - "apisstocratic" maybe). She is in formidable health, too, at twelve; her leg muscles still clearly delineated under her short fur; her eyes clear, her teeth fine, and her energy never flagging.

This dog is, in short, perfectly ideal in every possible way. (That these former owners of her apparently "disciplined" her to the extent that the poor girl once went THIRTY-FOUR hours without messing in the house, when I was stranded during a hurricane, tells me too much about what may have been done to her before she came to me.) Making her tail wag is about the best thing I can ask to happen, or to see, any day in the world. Her big sad almond-shaped eyes are as honest and beautiful as any *person's* I have ever known, of course.

She's a good kid. She is sustained, in her complete ignorance of her own old age, by the advent, a year or more ago, of our next-dog-neighbor, a boy of four with whom she plays without the slightest indication she's anything but what he is - a vital and exuberant young dog with tons of energy and friendliness to spare. She's purty-ful and hilarious. She's got a head made of tungsten, shaped like a Volvo. She's mad fun, and relaxing too.

And some MORONS gave. this. dog. UP.

Good for me, is what I say. Quite hopefully, good for HER.

But good lord. Who DOES that??

Who looks at a beautiful, weird American Bull/Huskie mix and says, "Nope, Not Good Enough." Who can possibly presume to be too GOOD for a DOG?? Any dog? Whose standards are set to such unbelievable stupidity?

I just will never understand. I'm grateful as hell, and aspire to be good enough Siddy has reason to be happy. She sure doesn't complain much (though she can sing operas about how cruel her life is when we go to the drugstore and I have to tether her outside for a few).

No comments: