Thursday, January 21, 2010

Oops, She Did It Again

I don't normally go around paraphrasing Miss Spears--although she does have a line in "Womanizer" that goes 'You say ahm crayzeh, I got yo crayzeh!' that I like to spout off now and then. Come to think of it, that would have been a fitting title, too. Because the dog? She did it again. And now? I got yo crayzeh!

Just when I think that we have possibly overcome the Jailbreak Syndrome with the dog, she goes and proves me wrong. This time she managed to squeeze out the mudroom door and streak through the garage as I was getting ready to take Sean to the bus stop and take Mary and myself to school. All I saw was a streak of yellow and all I felt was a cool breeze as the dog tore out the door. The children didn't even have time to be surprised before I barked, "Sean, run to the bus stop! Mary, go wait in the van!" and then ran inside to fetch a ball.

One of the last times Tilly tested my sanity escaped, I had her squeaky tennis ball in hand and was able to turn the escape into a block-long game of fetch. This time? Not so much. Tilly heard the squeak, and from where she was sniffing heaven-only-knows-what in the neighbor's yard, she stopped in her tracks and immediately zeroed in on the ball. I threw it into our yard and she was off like a shot to fetch it. But this time, she didn't bring it back. This time, she looked over her shoulder and, ball in mouth, ran for the proverbial hills.

I tracked her to yet another neighbor's yard and was roughly 30 yards away when she spotted me. She froze, ducked her head, lowered her tail, and looked at me warily. We squared off. I was determined to get the upper hand. I was not letting the dumb dog win.

Famous last words. (Although, I'm not really sure those are actually famous words. I've never seen them in a book of quotations and you don't really hear people bandy them about like some other famous words. So, okay, not famous. But certainly frequent. At least in this house.) I squatted down and hid the leash and called to her reassuringly. I'm fairly certain that she could only hear my words. I don't think she could hear my intentions. Which were, namely, to yank a knot in her tail. Or, at the very least, withhold treats for a little while. None of that mattered really, because she trotted towards me wagging her tail and I was all "Ohhh! Good dog! Come on Tilly girl! Let's get you home! What a good dog!" and she was all "SEE YA SUCKER!!" She got about 5 feet away and then hit the afterburners. Stupid dog even had the nerve to look over her shoulder as she ran away, ears flapping, a doggy smile upon her muzzle. It was like she was taunting me.

No, it wasn't like she was taunting me. She was taunting me! I was being taunted by a stinky, intellectually challenged dog!! So then, it. was. on.

I ran by some parents who were still talking after the bus had left and they all pointed and said, "Tilly went that way." I waved a hand in thanks and then ran home to Mary and the van.

We took off driving after the dog, thinking that she was headed for the next neighborhood or across the busy street outside our neighborhood. There was no sign of her. I did stop once, thinking that I saw her, but it was the dog of one of the neighbors that doesn't like Tilly. One of the neighbors that has complained about Tilly escaping and coming into her yard. One of the neighbors that inquired as to when we might be getting a fence. And her dog? Totally outside their fence. Hmph.

So then it was back to our cul-de-sac. I was driving slowly, flashers on, windows down, calling the dog. Then I glanced at the clock and realized that I needed to call work and let them know that I'd be late. Then I called a few people and asked them to pray that I'd find the dog quickly. What, don't you ask your friends to pray for stuff like that? Well, if you had this dog, you totally would. Because there was no way I was finding and snapping a leash on the dumb dog without divine intervention.

I spied her in yet another neighbor's yard, leisurely sniffing and taking lavish pees on their lawn, letting all and sundry know that she had visited. She saw the van and wagged her tail in greeting. I had barely hit the brakes when she made like the Invisible Man. I got out and tried to find her, traipsing through backyards and calling her name. And to think that my neighbors don't like me. Huh. Go figure!

After rattling her treat jar and calling and whistling and just generally making a fool of myself and freezing my fingers off for about 10 minutes, playing cat and mouse dumb dog and dumber master, she came through a side yard and spied the van again. She started to walk toward it, then stutter stepped, as if she were warring with herself. I'm sure the circuits in her little brain were nearly overloaded with the decision: Hmmm.....van with treats! or Fun game with making master look stoopid!

Finally, I was inspired to go to the van, open both sliding doors and ask Mary to call the dog. Mary barely got Tilly's name out and the dog was climbing in the van while I was snapping the leash onto her collar.

I drove back to the house and put the dog in while muttering bad words and then I drove to work nearly 40 minutes late and then I had 478 people ask me if I'd caught the dog and then my head exploded and then I died. The end.

Tonight? I will be spending my time researching electric collar/fencing systems. Stupid dog. She wins again.

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