When Harry Met Sally...and Zoe

The other day, Cabana and I paid a visit to my wonderful friend Peg, who fosters golden retrievers. She's especially fond of elderly and special needs dogs, who likely won't ever get adopted. Or at least, they usually don't--but her previous foster, 10-year old Hunter, got adopted by a family with two young boys. They live right by a beach, so Hunter will get to spend the rest of his life racing through the waves of the Pacific Ocean. Not too shabby!

Hunter's adoption made room for Sally, 14 years young and still plenty sassy, despite some health problems that are typical for dogs of her age.

Peg is also fostering Harold, who is 10-years old and 40 pounds overweight. He was never taught anything, not even "sit". He has obsessive issues--for instance, he likes to try to fit as many balls in his mouth as possible. Two seem to be his limit, but that doesn't keep him from trying to squeeze in a few more. And if all these issues weren't enough for one dog, Harold also has cataracts and is blind.

The two senior citizens get along alright, except when Harold trips over Sally because he can't see her. Let's just say Sally doesn't respond favorably, and boy, does she let Harold have it! It's mysterious, though, because Harold gets around extremely well for being blind--he chases tennis balls as well as any dog. He compensates with his other senses, especially his sense of smell, so you'd think he could detect Sally laying in his path. At the same time, Sally likes to position herself right smack in the middle of everything, maybe hoping that she can make Harold trip and then have a reason to let Harold have it. I thought that kind of crotchety behavior was a human trait, but I guess canines are not above it either.

As if two very large golden retrievers weren't enough, Peg is also taking care of Zoe, a whippet/chihuahua mix, whose owner is in the hospital. Before Zoe was rescued by this owner, she was used as an ashtray, leaving her coat riddled with cigarette burns. It's no wonder that Zoe is fearful and ornery (although she did warm up to me after a while--but Cabana wanted nothing to do with her and kept her distance).

Taking care of three dogs, none of which belong to her--that's my friend Peg. She's got a heart the size of California, even though she lives in a one-room cottage and has a 10-square foot backyard. She takes them for several walks every day and tires them out with a bucket of tennis balls in between.

Cabana didn't quite know what to do with herself at Peg's house. So many dogs, so little space, and so much commotion! Even though Harold couldn't see her, she kept her head down in submission to him.

And look how far away she skirts from Sally to let her pass! While Cabana may be a bit timid and aloof, she's also very appropriate and respectful--I'm proud of her for that. I hope to take a page out of Cabana's book and show that same deference and respect to Peg for her loving devotion to these dogs...and likely, to many more dogs to come.

Erin T  – (April 12, 2012 at 8:41 PM)  

That's awesome. I would love to adopt an older dog but know it wouldn't be fair to them with the puppies in my house. My 12yro lets me know this on a frequent basis. :)

Mango  – (April 15, 2012 at 4:45 PM)  

What a wonderful kind person to take in those senior citizen dogs. And Cabana is amazing. She knew right away how to behave around the old timers.

Mango Momma

Oskar  – (April 17, 2012 at 7:58 PM)  

Peg must have a heart the size of Texas. Thanks for telling us about her.

Nubbin wiggles,

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