Friday, May 30, 2014

The opportunist

Smooch was very tired yesterday. I'll take that back. She was exhausted.



And it was all my fault. I fixed a latch on one of the gates in her yard Wednesday night. Or so I thought. 
Thursday morning, I went to give her a post-breakfast cookie and she was gone. 
The gate I thought I had fixed was open.


I jumped in the Ranger and started searching. I drove up and down and around the ranch, then up and down the road. 
After a full hour, I finally caught my first glimpse of her about a half mile from home. But only a glimpse – 
she disappeared again through the trees and brush, hell bent on hunting rabbits. 
In one of my moments of desperation, I drove home, thinking she might have returned on her own.
And she had! She was still running and hunting rabbits, but at least she was in our pasture. 
I circled behind her and was able to herd her toward the barn, where she finally stopped to drink from the stock tank 
and I got a leash on her. She was no worse for wear except for a big hunk of cactus stuck in her lip.
I, on the other hand, was a wreck.


During the search mission, I tried not to let my mind wander to that dark place 
where something happens to her and I never find her and she doesn't come home.



I explained all that to Smooch but could extract no promises that she would never escape again.
If I'm stupid enough to leave a gate open, she is smart enough to run through it.
Somebody needs to wise up.

 



28 comments:

  1. so very glad you found her... that is a very scary place to be... heart just jumps in the throat

    ReplyDelete
  2. So glad she is home. We couldn't imagine life without Smooch.

    BA SP

    ReplyDelete
  3. If the pics for the posts are sequential, this explains her furious digging in the other post. She was having a serious urge to roam - and hunt rabbits. Glad you both survived her breakout. And it was a breakout. She knows where she is supposed to be. Closed gate or no closed gate. Guilt is the gift that keeps on giving and please let it go. All is well that ends well :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I would be a hysterical wreck. I don't know how you could keep it together. I think it's time to invest in one of those GPS collars. Is she part greyhound? I think she's playing you, she may be exhausted, but she looks very happy with herself.

    ReplyDelete
  5. So glad she is safely home!

    Julia

    ReplyDelete
  6. I'm glad she's home safe and sound. They really put us through the ringer of worry sometimes. I hope she never does that again.

    ReplyDelete
  7. The one terrible flaw in an otherwise perfect friend. I think RedHorse is right---GPS collar!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I am glad that you found her. It's horrific when a pet is missing.

    Laurie

    ReplyDelete
  9. So glad she had the good sense to come home. I feel your pain and know the panic feeling that having a lost dog brings. She has no clue what you went through and just thought it was one of the best days of her life.....little did she know it was one of the worst days of your life. Betsy

    ReplyDelete
  10. I know that sense of panic when your dog decides to go on an adventure. Knot in stomach...pounding heart...thinking the worst. ugh. Smooch - stay home please! It's the best place to be!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I thouht she was exhausted from digging, but she had enough energy left to go wabbit hunting. Little s**t! lol

    ReplyDelete
  12. I hate that feeling, like a lost child, they don't have the sense to know whats out there that can eat them. And some types of dogs aren't home bound mentally. the world is a place to explore and they just keep going. Im glad you found her. GPS chips for dogs? Only time in my life I had full blown girl hysterics complete with ugly crying was when my cat baby got out in the city and was out all night and I didn't even realize until the next day. Then a frantic searching and found him under the house next door. He spent the next 4 years trying to get out again! Love our critters but higher thought functions aren't part of them. I never panicked like that when our horses got out, they just wanted better grass so it was easy to find them and grain is too tempting. You're going to be double checking that gate for a while!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Glad there was a happy ending to this. She looks proud of herself. She has no idea of the dangers out there. My bet is you will never forget again ;) It just takes one time like that to make us vigilant and thank goodness it ended with her just having an adventure.

    ReplyDelete
  14. After 60 years of living with dogs that always kept me in sight, I just can't imagine what it would be like to have a dog that took off. I live near a busy highway, so that would be dangerous. If I lived clear out where you do, I would probably just close the gates and doors after them and let them worry, when they came back, about whether or not they'd ever be fed again. (I don't expect you to do that, it's just my style.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No highway, but there are coyotes.

      Delete
  15. Oh, how I hate imagining your fear and worry as you drove around looking for her. :-(
    But I am so, so glad to hear Miss Run-Away-Pants decided to come back and hunt wabbit in her own backyard. Please give her a pat from me.

    p.s. did you hear about Brett Michaels?

    ReplyDelete
  16. I'm so sorry. I thought she wouldn't run away from you. Jodie Belle, my Rough Collie, is one to not come when I call her. She threw all her training away and if not in a yard, she runs and doesn't look back.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So Lassie is not her role model?

      Delete
  17. I have a solution which might be worth the cost for piece of mind. It is called Pet Tagg and it is a gps tracker that lives on the pup. You set a zone for your house and then if Smooch leaves the zone, you get a text. You can then track where Smooch is, which will limit your search zone. It works on trails and open areas like around your home. My dog is just like Smooch and I have had it for years for piece of mind. It is really not that expensive when thinking of the calm it provides. It fits very nicely on the collar and doesn't stand out at all. Buy the little cover that goes over the tracker so it can't come off when Smooch is digging holes or chasing rabbits through the bushes. It is a fabulous product. Highly recommend for piece of mind and Smooch well being. You charge it up once a week or so and it lets you know when the battery is low. For a woman who likes technology, totally awesome. OMG, you might just want to get one for the donkeys and Hank. I wonder if they make them for horses and donkeys??? You might spend all day watching the herd move through the back 40. :)

    ReplyDelete
  18. that was an Adventure! I think her instinct talked and off she went hunting. hopefully you found her and brought her back.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Oh, I know that dark place you try not to enter when something's amiss with a pet. Smooch will never understand why you got so worked up about her having a little romp, but we certainly do. Bless her and her blissful ignorance.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Carson! I recently adopted Addie - a 'mutt' from South Carolina. She has unusually almond eyes and a 'fish hook' tail - big flop or stand up ears.
    I was trying to i.d. her mix and I came across 'the Carolina dog'. Today after reading your post, I went back to look at Smooch's DNA test and saw Australian Cattle dog - and Sharpe. If you have some time, look up Carolina dog. Smooch might qualify!! Not that it matters so much, but they are an American indigenous breed that's related to the Australian Dingo... probably brought over the Bearing Strait.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Wow, talk about heart failure material. Oh my, oh my I am so glad that the outcome is wonderfully peacefilled and serene. I can't imagine the level of fear you had.
    Smoochie, I know it is your fun things to chase wabbit, but honestly honey....no more terrible moments for Mom, dealio?????????

    ReplyDelete
  22. Very glad her story ended safely! Naughty Smooch! You gave your mama grey hairs!

    ReplyDelete
  23. So glad she's home! My fox hound mix has a nose on her, and her brain short circuits when she gets a good smell...and she's off! After one scary instance in Mammoth Cave where she chased a deer for hours, no more off lead romps for her! Don't freak your mom out like that, Miss Smooch!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Holy crap! I imagine you are still recuperating!! And you are not "stupid enough to leave the gate open". You are one of the most caring and careful and attentive mommas I know; unfortunately accidents happen. My Bali (so much like Smooch) would get out from time to time and it is the worst feeling. I know that dark place in the mind well. He was a sight hound and didn't know what a car was and we live near busy streets.... Fortunately, our escape stories always had a happy ending like this one. Anyway, so glad she had the sense to come home. Rest easy, friend.

    ReplyDelete
  25. This just popped up in my FB feed and it made me think of you, maybe it would be useful if Smooch ever gets loose again:

    http://www.whistle.com/gps/?utm_source=Facebook&utm_medium=gps&utm_content=gpslook&utm_campaign=WhistleGPS

    ReplyDelete
  26. Training is a wonderful thing . . . and yes, you can train a dog not to go through an open gate without permission.

    ReplyDelete