First, some backstory. For months now, Zoey has been going out in the back yard to ramble round a bit. It began when Eleanor was spending a lot of time out back, but she's continued her brief shootouts even in these wintry months, following a dog out or sitting at the door waiting for one to come in. She never goes far, and rarely has to be called in or chased; she just comes in when she's ready. Today, "ready" took on new meaning, though.
In unrelated psychotic animal news, our oldest dog and I have reached a brief but effective compromise on her own outgoing behaviors. Two mornings in a row, now, Tasha's put off what had been a regular, and insistent, 4:30 a.m. call to the bullpen
until between 5 and 5:15 in the morning. When it happened yesterday, I was so pleased by those extra few moments of weird-dreaming, I agreed that she and everyone else would get their feeding moved up a few minutes if she kept this schedule up.
Sure enough, at 5:10 this
morning, she honored the deal, and I got out of bed to do likewise. I threw on a robe, escorted her and Ebony (the dog who goes out when, but only when, the feeding routine begins) to the back door....
and saw a wet, mizzable face on the other side. Fortunately, not a cold one- it was 60F out there when Zoey ran out yesterday morning, and it was still in the 40s at 5 this morning (though it's dropped like a stone since then)- but it's been windy as all get-out and it was raining sideways.
Simple fact is, she deked us out last night. Eleanor remembers her going out with one or both of the dogs last night- and
she remembers seeing her near the door, beckoning her to come in, and having Zoey reject the offer. I doubt she'll turn that down next time after this. It had been long days for both of us- Eleanor's starting early, mine ending late- and we just lost track of the turnstile count.
I toweled her off, gave her the honor of the first feeding, and moments later she was purring again. She's now happily camped out atop the afghan Eleanor is sleeping beneath (today is the opposite- I start early, she finishes late). She's also collared with a name-and-number tag, but I'm thinking, after this, that a microchip might not be a bad idea if she really is
the small dog she thinks she is.
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