The Hobo Scenario
About 4 months ago, the small one called me from a local park where she was playing ultimate frisbee with her church youth group. She was in a panic. She quickly tells me the story of this sweet little puppy who is allegedly being abused by her current “owner”, a homeless gentleman who (also allegedly) tells the kids that if someone doesn’t take this puppy he’ll have to kill it because he just can’t take care of her any longer. Guess who ended up with the puppy. The Youth Director. Just kidding. We did. I allowed her into the house on the condition that it was temporary, only until we could find her a forever home. Because we already have a dog and she’s old and doesn’t appreciate young whippersnappers. And I’m allergic to most dogs. Our dogs have always been outside dogs. I have a new rug that I like and don’t want messed up. And the list of reasons really goes long from there. I offer to have her first shots and to get her fixed. I post her picture on facebook and start messaging friends that I think need to have furry companionship. No takers. Despite her cuteness.
And the name the small one has chosen for this dog, due to the circumstances of her rescue, is Hobo. “Moooom” she says, rolling not just her eyes but her whole body, “Hobo means Homeward Bound, it’s not an ugly name.” Yeah. Tell that to the person who is most likely to have to roam the neighborhood calling that name when it gets loose. Good Gravy this situation is getting worse by the minute. But darn that dog. She learns right away to scratch at the door to go out. And spends the night in a crate with no problems. And she likes toys. Especially squeaky toys. It’s been years since we had a dog that likes toys. We’re done for.
But then she turns into this:
She is now ours. Rather we are now hers. She rules us. Because she’s sweet. And has soft ears. And likes to play with her squeaky toys. And she likes to run and hike on trails. And we took her on her first overnight camping trip and she was fantastic. She didn’t mind being on the leash 99% of the time, and when she got a rare moment of freedom she would only go a short distance before coming back to make sure her pack was either following her or still where she left them. She slept in the tent without scratching or whining. Okay so she did try to nudge Joe off his sleeping pad in the middle of the night once she figured out it was warmer than the tent floor, but other than that, she was great. And she sleeps in the car. After 2 days of hiking she wasn’t the only one sleeping.
Now Joe’s plan for that Hobo dog is to make her a trail dog. He wants her to know how to stay with us on long hikes. He wants her to trail his mountain bike when he rides. He wants her to catch frisbees and be a “real” dog as he says. Not like our older mutt who wants absolutely nothing more out of life than a good long belly rub. I’m kind of on the old girl’s side on that one. Who needs exercise when all I really want is someone to rub my head and tell me I’m a good dog?