Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Yesterday I ran down the street, in 90+ heat and high humidity. I had spotted my confused and lost 4-pound, 16-year-old poodle, Silvie, staggering along the street. Just as a car whooshed by, Silvie fell to the pavement, rolled on her back and kicked frantically into the air.
"SILVIE!" I screamed, running faster and waving my arms over my head to try to attract her attention. Silvie is practically deaf and can only recognize me if I am within ten feet or so. I'm sure that if any neighbors saw me running and screaming in such heat, they dialed 911 and reported an insane woman on the loose.
I was visiting Holly and Ben's house to puppy sit for a while. Their new "baby" Willow is only 8 weeks old and upset about being crated. They manage to be home a lot, with their crazy schedules, but Willow needed her Grandy to come tend to her for the afternoon.
HOLLY AND BEN
SILVIE AND MICHELLE
I had brought my poodles, Silvie and Michelle, who is 12 years old. Every time I took the dogs outside, I was vigilant, and only took them out the back, well away from the street. I feared that Willow might escape and run from me.
I also kept a close eye on Maggie, their Yorkie, who sometimes visits neighboring yards. I felt pretty confident of Silvie and Michelle. Michelle is obedient and Silvie stays right at my feet. Always.
Until yesterday. Trying to keep Willow from wetting the floor and encouraging her to "go" outside, I took the dogs out, oh, about 30 times. Well, maybe not that many, but a lot. And was it hot!
On one of our trips back into the house, Silvie was missing. I looked all over the house, in case she was quietly wandering around. No Silvie.
VERY YOUNG HOLLY AND SILVIE NAPPING
"Come on, let's go outside," I called to the dogs and looked around the back yard. We went back in and looked, calling, though Silvie can't hear much. We went back outside and I carried Willow around the house twice, and walked along the wooded area, listening for little feet scrabbling in the undergrowth and leaves. No sign of Silvie.
I shut the dogs into the house and ran back outside and to the street. I ran into the street and looked both ways. Still no Silvie. Which way? A tiny dog, lost and confused, could be anywhere!
I began to run toward the highway, which was a block or so. Finally, as I rounded a curve, I saw poor little Silvie! That was when the car sped by and Silvie fell to the ground.
I screamed, Silvie!" and ran down the street toward Silvie, who struggled to her feet and stumbled toward the gutter. As I neared my little girl, a car came up behind me. I waved at it to slow down. I kept my eyes glued to Silvie until I could get to her and pick her up. The careless driver didn't slow down at all, just zoomed past me and my doggie.
I lifted Silvie and held her gently against my body. She rested her little head on my chest and drooped in my arms. Was she injured? Did a car hit her? I looked quickly, but there were no obvious injuries and no blood. Silvie has occasional seizures and I think that's what happened when I saw her fall.
Dazed from the heat, fear, and seizure, Silvie just slumped against me. I thanked God all the way back to the house that little Silvie was spared a horrible fate. When I got into the house, I offered water to Silvie, but she just stared ahead. I lifted a little water in my hand and wet her mouth several times, then carried her to the sofa and just sat holding Silvie to let her cool down and rest for a little while.
Then I examined her little body to find no injuries, not even scrapes. Silvie seemed a little tentative the rest of the evening and seemed afraid that bouncy, puppyish Willow would knock her down, so she just rested in my lap and lapped up the soft cooings of concern from Ben and Holly as they came home.
HOLLY AND BEN
YEN AND YANG: SILVIE AND MICHELLE