Let’s take a moment to recognize Poncho; the dog in the picture above. He is a seven month old Border collie / Hound mix huge puppy. He is very playful, but also very dumb.
Let’s take a moment for that all to sink in and when I say this next line, it may sting a little bit because we have these fond thoughts about how cute Poncho is or how great his coat is or how majestic he is.
Poncho is a little shit.
There. I said it. But the following story will make all the sense in the world and if you ever lost a pet, you will sympathize with the anger I feel toward him, yet the gladness that he did in fact, return home.
I spent the night with Diego last night and Diego left around 5:15am like he does everyday for work. He tucked me and Poncho in his bed and said sleep for a while and take Poncho out to potty before you leave.
After he leaves, I check my phone and see an email from unemployment which I thought was peculiar since I haven’t claimed unemployment since March. Turns out that with a lot of people in my state, there was a lot of frauding that happened on the government’s behalf as well as the people’s. So all the claims I have made in the past year and a half are now under review and I had to fill out a lot of paperwork trying to defend why I needed or why I took unemployment. Hopefully I don’t have to pay it back but who knows.
I called Diego telling him that this was happening and near the end of the paperwork it claimed that my account was flagged either because I was claiming more benefits from paid family and medical leave or someone got into my information and was using my social security number illegally. I personally think it’s the former because I was about to receive a decision on my medical leave payments and now this happened, so the timing aligns.
So as disgruntled as I was, I get ready to leave around 6am. I try to let Poncho out to potty when I notice that Diego left the gate open. Poncho goes running out the gate and toward the end of the driveway. Now, mind you, I am wearing a hard cast that is not to be walked on and my other foot is barefoot on the gravelly cement. I call for Poncho and pat my leg quietly since it’s 6am on a Saturday morning in a primarily retired neighborhood.
Poncho went and bolted across the street into the neighbor’s yard. I run inside and put my walking boot on my broken foot, my Birkenstock on my right foot, grab his harness, leash, and dog treats and grab my house keys in case the door locks on me.
When I get out into the street, Poncho is no where to be found.
Then I catch his tail move as he is three houses down in the front garden of yet another neighbor. I call him and try to drop treats but he couldn’t hear the treats drop on the pavement, so he did not come toward me. Plus he knew that the game would be over if he got near me.
Eventually he found cat food and water on this neighbor’s back porch and proceeds to eat the remainders and lick the bowl. At this point, I am in the driveway trying to quietly call to him, I am worried about getting shot being on someone’s property without their permission because it’s too early to knock on the door and ask if I could grab the dog.
After ten more minutes of me getting closer and closer, he is backed in a corner and cannot get out but he’s happy as a clam with his extra breakfast. I finally ease my way over with treats in my hand which he eats and is preoccupied so I could get his harness on halfway.
I only got the harness halfway on him because it’s kind of difficult to put on a dog when they are willing participants, let alone when he wants to run nakey without his tags or info on him. Once I got the harness half on him, I tug on the leash for him to come along.
Once we were back on the street, I gave him some more treats so he would be more willing to come home. We got home after the thirty minute adventure and I was livid. I slammed the gate shut and I am not blaming Diego for this, but I called and told him what happened and said he needs to be better about closing the gate so this doesn’t happen again.
You guys! I was LIVID! I was happy he was safe and sound, but honestly not how I wanted to spend my morning. I left shortly thereafter and Poncho was devastated. Had all this not have happened, I would have spent more time with him. But it all felt worse because it’s technically Diego’s dog and I know he would be devastated if I lost Poncho while he was gone.
Happy ending to an unnerving story.
I have been relaxing all day at home, and I think now I deserve another nap lol.