Buddy, the tan Chihuahua, who came into our lives and went out as fast as he came in. He left an impression that will stay forever in our hearts. No one knows where Buddy came from and no one is sure what his given name was in his previous life. Buddy, however left his paw print on every heart he met while he was on the road.
One morning I happened to see a post in our subdivision about a small dog loose in our neighborhood. There were many sightings of the illusive Chihuahua here and there and a few pictures and it seemed no one could catch this charming but skittish wanderer. He didn’t look like he had been on nature’s environment very long but once the sightings were confirmed from several weeks, it became important to ensure his safety from traffic and other risks.
One of the residents noticed he would follow another dog, so they enticed him into a back yard using another neighbor’s dog. It took some time to get him to enter their home and it was a little scary to see how Buddy, his new name, would interact with her two dogs, a gorgeous golden retriever and a black and white beautiful Papillion. He seemed to be more comfortable with the dogs so wherever he came from, there were other dogs.
Jessica, the lady of the house and Buddy’s rescuer, fell in love with him immediately and I agree he was a charmer even though he was hesitant, even resistant with human approach. Being patient with him, Buddy decided to start following her around the house. Over the next few days while they posted and called trying to find his real owner, Buddy became conservatively comfortable.
Jessica’s husband felt they had enough dogs already and decided they could not keep three dogs and felt they had no choice but to send Buddy to a no kill shelter who came recommended by a pet caretaker service. Jessica’s heart broke and apparently, Buddy’s heart was broken too. He had chosen Jessica as his new owner and couldn’t understand why he had to leave. Here is how we came into the picture.
I had been following Buddy’s story and was elated when I saw that a neighbor had taken Buddy into their home. My heart jumped with joy being a dog lover myself. I sighed a big breath of relief as it was frightening knowing that little fur baby was wandering the streets. I was happy and was hoping Buddy’s owners would see the announcement and come for him. If they didn’t, he was in a good home. Then I saw the post they were planning on taking Buddy to a shelter and my heart screamed, “We will take him in, and Buster can have a “buddy” to play with.
Buster is our Papillion mix and is black with a white chest patch. He was a rescued puppy and we had to work with him on social skills so we hoped he would accept Buddy without incident since Buddy was skittish. We were excited and apprehensive at the same time but was determined no shelter for Buddy. We were experienced in rescue dogs since all our dogs have been rescued and those precious dogs are another set of stories themselves but for another time.
We made the contact with our neighbors who had Buddy and I should have picked up on a hint since they hesitated and took a very long time to bring our new bundle of joy. We waited and waited and then Greg, my husband called them. They were coming in their golf cart with Buddy.
As they drove up, she had a tight hold on Buddy and of course he looked frightened but he didn’t try to jump out of my arms and allowed me to put the collar and leash on him and rub him while Jessica cried and made me promise that if it didn’t work out, she wanted me to call her. I agreed but felt we would spoil Buddy and would have no problems. Little did I know what we were getting into and the dilemma we would face.
Buddy ate that night and he and Buster even played together. We watched Buster not even bark at Buddy. My husband and I thought it was wonderful to see them bonding as this was the biggest threat or at least that is what we thought. Wrong!
I am not sure if Buddy looked at me as the enemy and the thief who stole him out of his owner’s arms, but I have never had any dog, even aggressive tagged dogs, to resist my loving. Buddy would look at me with almost humanistic eyes with questioning why I had done such a vile thing. I had dealt with dog’s nature all my life and thought with a little time, Buddy would come to love me. For some reason, he followed Greg around and I thought that was good and a step forward. Buddy slept all night and we looked forward to the next day.
We have a doggie door and Buddy had either used one before or he is just extremely smart. The first evening and the next morning both he and Buster went out with Greg and me. We watched both dogs play and romp and chase each other. I saw several submissive plays by each one and was elated. We felt we had a new baby and Buster’s BFF. Oh, how we were deceived by this escape artist.
After feeling contented they were playing together as if they had known each other for a while, I went back in the house to finish getting dressed and to make some business calls. For some reason, I thought the dogs came back in the house when Greg came in and announced he was going to get a collar and name tag with our info. We planned on taking Buddy to the vet clinic to check for a chip when we realized he hadn’t had the scan for a chip. As much as we were excited about having him, it was only fair we check as we would want someone to check Buster in case he got out and became lost.
To be clear, these events happened in a few minutes that I will explain. I walked into the living room and saw Buster come in the doggie door. It had already been established the night before that Buster would come in first and Buddy would follow. I waited a few seconds and didn’t see Buddy’s head pop through the door. I looked out in the yard and I didn’t see him. Jessica had explained he sat in the corner until he felt comfortable. I called Greg on his cell and asked if the dogs had come in with him. Apparently, they did come in but had gone back out, but Greg thought they were in the house.
My search began with looking in each room, under each bed, and in closets. I started to panic and called Greg back. He assured me that it was okay, and he was probably hiding. I went back to the yard and tried to see if I could tell if he had escaped. I didn’t see the small hole behind a hose hung on the fence or I would have panicked earlier than I did.
Greg came back and checked and found the hole, so the neighborhood search was on. Greg and I took turns manning the vehicle with Buster riding shot gun. We searched and searched with each round through the neighborhood causing our hopes to sink. We received a call from Jessica, Buddy had returned to their home and dug under the fence. That should have been our sign, but we went and brought Buddy back home. Buster was happy and even Buddy looked happy. Did we have a surprise coming?
The next morning, with everything seemingly going smoothly, our new little pair of fur babies, went out the doggie door, playing together, and frolicking. Greg asked where Buster and Buddy were. He went out the back door and at that very moment spotted Buddy had dug a new hole and after taking one last goodbye look at Greg, darted under the fence and vanished. Greg walked back as I was coming out the door, said “Honey, Buddy is not our dog and he has made up his mind who his owner is and it’s not us.”
All I could think is Buddy was out again and the fear of him getting hurt was bearing on my mind. The search began again, and Buster couldn’t figure out why his new friend kept leaving. Well, it became clear to Greg and to Buster when they found Buddy on the porch at Jessica’s home. The Buddy Adventure was over. He had claimed his new home and Jessica and her husband had a new owner. At first, we, including Buster, were sad and a little disappointed and then we thought about it. When an animal chooses a human, that will is so much stronger than when we humans choose a dog to be ours.
I am happy to say Buster is doing great with his new “sister” Duchess and from all accounts Buddy is safe at his home with his chosen family.
Written by Arline Miller
May 7, 2020
As a writer, I found this writing about Buddy and felt at this time of thankfulness I would share it. Life never plays out like we expect and even if our intentions are good, some plans go awry. Buddy’s happy and we are blessed with Duchess who is Buster’s side kick. All is well with us!
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