Just when I think I have run out of things to write about, Shiva provides me with enough fodder for a month’s worth of posts.
I’ll set the scene for you:
It’s six-thirty in the morning and I wake up in my sleeping bag to hear Shiva whining from her tent. (Yes, my dog has her own camping tent – that’s another story.) My practically husband shows no sign of consciousness. I realize I’m going to have to get up. Not a fun realization. After pulling on a jacket and my sandals, I blearily step outside. I can see Shiva pawing at the door to her smaller tent and know she must really have to go. Un-zipping the door, I have to move quickly to catch her by the collar before she tears off.
The last thing I need this early in the day is my dog running wild in the campground.
We go on a short walk up a nearby trail so Shiva can do her thing. Once she finishes, I know I am going to have to walk up the road to the human bathrooms.
Unfortunately, in this particular section of the park, the facilities are rather far away. At least a few minutes walk. Since it is so early in the morning and all the other campers are sound asleep, I contemplate taking the dog with me. She hates being left alone, especially in new places. I’d hate for her to start barking and wake everyone else up. However, after pondering over it, I decide to leave her at the campsite. My PH is still there and if she goes nuts, surely he’ll wake up to calm her down.
I connect Shiva up to her long line. Grabbing the container of kibble, I scoop up a handful and toss the small pieces into the bushes. Shiva immediately leaps in the direction of the food and I take the opportunity to head back down the road.
Walking quickly, I listen for any sounds of distress and am surprised I don’t detect a single whine. Shiva has been a lot more relaxed in general this trip. Much more so than last year. Perhaps the last of her anxieties have fallen away. I couldn’t be more proud of our girl.
The campground is still. I enjoy listening to the sound of the ocean waves mixing with birdsong. If I have to be up early, at least it’s on such a lovely morning. I finish washing up and open the bathroom door, planning on a light nap once I return to the campsite.
Oh, look, a dog, I think as I step into the sunglight. I wonder where… Oh, crap. That’s MY dog!
There stands Shiva in front of me: tail wagging, eyes bright, tie-out line no where to be seen.
There’s nothing to do but attempt to get us both back to the site. I take her by the collar but it’s too far of a walk to hold her the entire way. Amazingly, Shiva is just so happy to be with me, she doesn’t attempt to run off. Heeling nicely by my side we walk down the road. It’s really hard to be upset with her for escaping when she’s behaving so well. We get back without any mishap – she doesn’t even attempt to jump on any food-strewn picnic tables. I have never wanted to praise and scold her more in my life.
I do neither but I let her go back to searching for kibble as I try to figure out how she got loose. According to my PH, she didn’t make a sound.
Yet, somehow, she was able to rip the D-ring off her collar, find out which direction I had gone, follow me all the way to the bathrooms, and then wait patiently for me to emerge. My dog, my crazy, wacked-out destructo dog, completely ignored the massive opportunities for scrounging her lack of a leash provided. Not only did she not run amok in the park, she also didn’t bark, or harrass the many other dogs camping in the area. She has never been so bad and yet so good at the same time.
What can you say? What can you do but laugh?
Needless to say, in a few short weeks she has broken both her collar and her leash. I am starting to understand why people buy so many. You never know when you will need a spare!