Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Dog

Christmas in the midwest was sleeting on the window of the truck stop where we had breakfast. Our dogs stayed home chewing their bones. Biscuits and gravy that's my big dietary sin. We were out to enjoy a meal, then back home to pack for Puerto Rico.
We sat looking at the sleet accumulate on the window before braving the elements to get to the car. Naw, we are not hardy anymore. We could have sat there for a long time waiting for the weather to improve, but off we went.
Just as I backed out of the parking space I saw a big black lab with a new red collar in my rear view. Ok, so where's the owner I don't want to hit anybody. No owner in sight, so what is this beautiful dog doing here? Just as that thought crosses my mind, he heads towards the highway. No time to wonder I call to him. His worried look gives way to that happy wiggle as he comes up to me with his low, submissive tail wag.
The lab realizes that he doesn't know me and starts to act shy. It's a good thing I have a lead in the car. I quickly slip it over his head. With the wind and the sleet I don't want him on the road. He's well fed and can't jump into my suv, so I coax him to put his front paws on the tailgate. With a big shove he is in and looking happy again. What a lovely temperament he has!
Ok, what are my options here? I ask all who come out of the restaurant if they know anything about him, no luck. We drive around the truck stop asking anyone we see if they know anything about him.
Just as I think I'll end up taking him to a shelter, we pull in at the truck repair place at the end of the lot. There's a man going in his shoulders are slumped. I pull up next to him, but he can't see through the back window. "Hey, do you know anybody who lost a dog?" "Yes, my best friend is gone" he replies. When the dog hears his voice he starts whimpering and his tail is wagging so fast.
We are happy to have found him. He thanks us and as I think the story is over the man tells us about how the dog saved his life a couple of months ago. The man was working under a truck that was jacked up as usual, but this time the dog got under it with him. He told the dog to go; it wouldn't leave. He got out from under the truck to remove the dog from the area, when the truck fell off the jack.
That made our Christmas!

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