I am in the market for canine hearing aids this afternoon.
Twice today, I’ve taken Natia the Naughty, quite often described as looking like a drowned rat, across the street to the local park. Once we cross the street, I release the prisoner to let her run, while “Booorn free, as free as the wind blows…” plays on my internal jukebox.
She used to do a racetrack run – wide circles at a dead gallop – but 10+ years has taken its toll, and it’s more of a trot in a drunk oval these days.
I’ve suspected hearing loss on a couple of occasions, but today, I have EVIDENCE.
No one else was in the park. It is a small park. I was NOT THAT FAR AWAY. 30 feet, maybe. Breezy and sunny and 50-ish degrees. Breezy. That’s gotta be it.
Her ears perked up and she stopped, looking to one side, and then the other. She looked ahead, but we already know she is cataracty-impaired, so that didn’t work for her either. I know she heard me, albeit faintly, but she didn’t look behind, where I was standing.
She began running, trying to find that voice.
“Natia! NATIA! Natia, I’m RIGHT HERE!”
Zip. Zilch. Nada. Nope.
I had to chase Mrs. Magoo all the way across the park, up the embankment, across the stream, around the gazebo…
THREE DIFFERENT TIMES.
Geri, it’s an alternative weight loss plan. Who needs Simply Fit, five mile walks, or a bike, when you’ve got a little hard-of-hearing, blind-as-a-bat, rat dog to chase?
I am grateful for Natia and her sweetness and desire to run free. Or run desperate. Either way, she ran and got exercise.
I am grateful for a sunny day and the relatively safe space for her to run.
I am grateful for a change in my exercise plan this afternoon.
I am grateful for a break from the computer to chase after my little companion.
I am grateful that there were no cars in her way, no big dogs to scream at, and no fresh poop on the bottom of my shoes after we reunited.
And I am grateful that she is back on her makeshift bed, buggy-eyed and begging for dinner.