Friday, February 27, 2015

Dog Rescue on the Malecon in Havana, Cuba

Bound and placed in a bag, squirming frantically to free herself, she lay exhausted on the shore of the Malecon in Havana with the sun beating down, hours before the tide would come in.

Two young lovers strolled hand in hand, discussing their class work and dreams for the future. They paused for a kiss, and then they saw a bag on the rocks. It moved! No, it was just a bag of garbage someone had carelessly tossed out; it couldn't be moving, but there it moved again.

With the daring of youth the young man leaped the concrete rail and negotiated the rocks towards the bag, which moved spasmodically as he approached. He ripped the bag open to discover a small yellow spaniel. Her legs and muzzle were tied. He carried the bundle to the railing where he and his sweetheart freed the dog, who wagged her tail in gratitude.

“Who could do such a thing to such a sweet little animal?” The lovers looked at each other in wonder, as they sat petting her.
“What are we going to do with her?”
Since they lived with her mother, who already had three dogs and two cats, they knew they shouldn't ask to keep the dog, but once you save a being from death you can’t just abandon her, so they called.
“Mom, we found the prettiest little dog. She was tied up in a bag and thrown on the rocks. We were walking along the Malecon and saw the bag move. You won’t believe how sweet she is; can she stay with us until we find a home for her? No, mom, I understand. It’s just that we saved her life and don’t know what to do with her. Mom, what should we do?”

Association National for the Protection of Animals and Plants is on Calle Principe number 128. 
Take her there; these are the people who help animals in Cuba. You can trust them to do the best for your little rescue. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Dogs in Cuba

Friends, who read this blog on a regular basis are wondering:
what in the hell happened to her?
The short answer is Cuba!

Yeah, no kidding; I really went to Cuba to visit a sister of my heart, who just happens to be the vice president of ANIPLANT, the association in Cuba, which advocates for animals and plants.

On Saturdays, in a park west of Habana, any number of people bring their dogs to train, and visit with other “dog” people.
After about thirty years of earning my living as a professional dog trainer, I consider myself a connoisseur of dog training styles, so watching competitors preparing for the Pan American Dog Show was a lot of fun.

The heady days of Cuba’s capitalist past peek out through once grand town homes divided into apartments. People, dogs and cats hang out in the streets.
For old car fanatics, Cuba is the best. My husband, Kirt, would have been toe tapping excited to the sherbet array of colors an old Chevy can come in here.

Coming from the USA, aka the land of billboards in your face, I missed all the roadside sales pitches. Fidelism’s grace Cuban roadside billboards.

I have many stories to share with you. It’s good to be home with Smoki, Blondie, Chi-Ping, Robert Redford, and Lucky. We’re expecting company next week, so I’m going to make every effort to get organized. Smile.


Sunday, February 22, 2015

Pitbull Wandering the Neighborhood

The Sato hill gang chases off stray dogs wandering through the neighborhood, but yesterday morning when I opened the door Lucky and Robert Redford clamored to get in the house with ears back worried looks.
A large intact pitbull pissed on my tires. “No!” I hollered as my scared boys ran in the door. Chi-Ping looked like a prickly pear with every hair standing on end. She barked and growled. The pit looked aggravated by her. Where the hell was the vinegar spray I keep by the door?

Blondie wanted no part of this boy. She laid in a ball on the veranda on the far side of the house, pretending to sleep. So far he knew to leave that sleeping bitch lie, but Chi began snapping her tiny jaws at the pit’s well-muscled head.
The handsome pecker pissed on the tires again. This is not allowed on my carport, so I grabbed my little bat out of the car and thumped it against the tire. Pit boy got the message.
My hope to get Chi in the car and away from the big dog she was really beginning to annoy didn’t happen. She always tries to jump in the car when the door opens. Now, her hair stood in a ridge down her back, like a Mohawk, her eyes gleamed with rage and she spit through her teeth in a growl.
The pit began to stiffen. He clearly had enough of her. I scooped her up; he went for her. “No,” in my most authoritative tone was greeted by what sounded like, “F that,“ in pitbull Spanish, as he leaped at the snarling little critter in my arms.
Chi-Ping seldom cooperates when it counts and this was no exception. She wiggled and squirmed for all she was worth to get the bad dog.
The nobody home look in the pitbull eyes told me of trouble to come, if I didn’t get Chi in the house now. A lifetime of experience won out as I wacked the pit on the nose when he leaped for my little girl, Chi, who had to be tightly clamped under my arm until I could get her in the door.
The pit stepped about three feet away from me after the smart smack I gave him. Once I deposited Chi in the house, I went around to the other side of the porch to check on Blondie, whose absence spoke volumes about how afraid my dogs were of this wandering pitbull, who wagged his tail as he followed me.  
Blondie preferred to stay where she was. The boys and Chi were safely tucked in the house, so I left the pitbull standing on my carport when I went to the gym, and prayed he would leave before I came home.
This handsome animal I’ve seen tied up in a yard not too far from here; frankly, I’m glad he had a good morning escape even if my dogs aren’t.