Whenever the beloved Scooter sees that he is to be allowed out the side door onto the driveway and the wonders that it leads to, instead of the back door that leads to the confines of the fenced in yard, he becomes almost impossible to restrain. Therefore, one must first get the leash attached to his collar before he realizes that his view of the world is about to change. Cause when that door is opened…he is out of it like a bullet. “Where to go first? Over here. No, over there! No, back inside. No, just kidding! Let’s go to the mailbox. Come on, Mama…let’s go. Keep up with me! Come on, let’s race. No? OK Where then? Gotta pee. OK now, I’m ready. In the car?!? Seriously? WE’RE GOING IN THE CAR? OH! Joy of joys! This is great! Life is good! LIFE IS GOOD…I”M GOING IN THE CAR!!!!! I’ll just jump right in! OOPS! Let me try again! What happened? Did you make the car higher? Help me, MAMA!” And, so, I help this sweet old dog who is now 14 years old…in body…not soul…into the back of the car. And, off we go.
Since Scooter is now about 20 feet away from me, it is not an easy thing to control him. I begin to wrap the leash around my hand in order to bring him closer. It does not take but 1 swift pull from him before I know this is not a good idea. So in order to regain control of the animal, I begin walking towards him in an effort to grab hold of his collar. Bear in mind that he is smack dab in the middle of the ‘dog walk area’ which has seen many a dog walking there. I can just tell. So, actually I tiptoe towards him. “Hey look at Mom! She thinks she is gonna come and get me. I’ll wait till she gets closer…and then we’ll play chase the dog!” And, I am not in a playing mood. Thinking fast, I step on the leash, and stop him mid-sprint. “WHOA! I don’t think she wants to play right now. Bummer.” Grabbing the leash, I slowly pull the unwilling dog towards me…and finally, I have his collar in my hand. And in we walk…me, bent over holding onto the collar, him, trying to avoid going in the same direction as I, and 20 ft. of leash trailing behind. I am thinking to myself how great it is to be the owner of a dog.
Once inside, I need to sign us in. This means that I have to turn loose of his collar. And, Scooter, being no dummy, takes that opportunity to rush the door. Just my luck, as he is standing there, scratching the glass for dear life, in comes another pet owner. A cat owner. Scooter doesn’t think cats belong on the same planet as dogs…and he is quick to let this lady and her cat know this. She is actually about to jump up on the benches. I am telling her that he will not bite. And all the time he is showing her that he, indeed, has many teeth and is not afraid to use them. Who do you think she believed? I furiously call Scooter, while trying to explain that my leash is broken, and I am so sorry that she is afraid, and he really is no danger, and I never wanted a dog in the first place, this is Alex’s dog and I am not responsible for his lack of manners. When I get my hands back on the collar, I allow him the smallest amount of slack, and I sit down and try to recover. Scooter, knowing that he has gone too far over that proverbial line, proceeds to walk to the center of the room and…let’s just say…his nerves got the best of him.
I tell the young man at the desk that “we” have had an accident, and ask him to PLEEEEEASE put us back into an exam room to wait. I am not sure, but I think I saw him roll his eyes. Can’t imagine why. But, he does as I ask…after he calls for “clean-up in the waiting area.” Scooter and I, attached firmly to his collar, walk carefully across the waiting room floor, and enter an exam room.
“OH! NO! I know what this means! I know! I know! I do not want to be here. Let me out, let me out! OK…then I’ll hide behind Mom. They will never find me there. No, I’ll just get in her lap. No, I will lay on the floor…no, I’ll hide. OK really, I’ll just sit in her lap. No, they’ll find me. OH, DEAR! OH, DEAR!” And we continue to play this lovely game until the girl comes in to weigh him. Clever girl that she is, she goes out and brings me a very short leash to replace the one that has died on me.
The visit with the doctor is uneventful…what with 3 of us surrounding him. We get his medicine. He gets 2 shots…and we begin the trek out to the car. As luck would have it, in walks a man with his dog walking calmly on a leash right beside him. Just like well-behaved dogs should . How embarrassing, as Scooter as gone into ‘hunker-down mode’ again. The man begins calling.”Scooter, come here!” And, for the first time in his life, Scooter obeys a command. HOWEVER…the man is talking to his Scooter…not my Scooter. And my Scooter is highly offended when the treat that the man has in his hand goes to his dog and not mine. “Well, he said ‘Scooter’…what’s up with that other dog taking my name?”
Out the door, we finally go. To the back of the car…and with a boost from me, he’s back inside. The hatch is down, I am driving, and Scooter is spread eagle on the floor. ..not even bothering to look out the windows. When we make it home, he goes right inside, drinks a gallon of water, and goes to his bed. It is not long before I am doing the same. “The vet? Nothing to it! Going there is a breeze!” He has another appointment in 3 weeks. I’m thinking I’ll hire some help. And get a new leash!