[Part I and Part II] We’re at the front door…. I put Dena’s muzzle on, which is akin to a Ballerina putting on toe shoes for a performance. Greyhounds wear muzzles when they are racing and when in strange environments for just those instances where best intentions don’t count.
Dena & Elby, That Cat! Meet
I opened the front door, keeping a firm grip on Dena’s leash and collar. There was a bit of a scramble in that Dena wanted her pack leader to lead and I wanted her to go first so I could clear the door of her tail and shut it…. Elby came walking around the corner –
Elby promptly swelled a foot in every direction, fur standing on end. caught dumbfounded with a similar expression to this one (visualize the fur):
which I would caption, “What the **** is that?!”
And Dena..? Dena ignored Elby. Utterly ignored him. “Cat, what cat? There is a cat here?”
Elby took offense. “You not taking me seriously, dog?!” He swelled more. He slunk between table, chair, peeking around corners. Dena? Dena yawned, she was bored by Elby. Cat-friendly? Oh, my word, that does not begin to encompass Dena’s attitude of sheer indifference. Elby, being Elby, gets up on a chair across from the couch, leaning on the arm, daring, insisting, Dena recognize him. Nothing. Zip, zilch, nada. Elby now walks straight up to the couch, fur still out in every direction and touches noses – eyeball to eyeball.
Nothing. In less than an hour or two, the muzzle is off. By three hours, Elby has properly sniffed Dena’s tail and vice-versa – (must have been one of Claire’s lessons in proper etiquette) – the leash is off and we all lay down and take a nap on the couch, together.
Ta Da! So, what happened then, you ask?
Well… there are differences between greyhounds. Yep. Claire wouldn’t cross into the kitchen. Hated linoleum. Dena, Dena strolled right in and ate all of Elby’s food. She ate my food. She will eat anything unguarded, with some strange results. Fur instance,
My entrepreneur kids came to the door and were thrilled to meet Dena, who was ecstatic to meet them. She is the Ambassador of Greyhounds. She is happy to meet anyone at any time, but particularly enamored of people in vehicles. One lady had opened her car door to get out, while greeting Dena, who promptly tried to climb into the car with her….
I left the closet door open. This is the closet that acts as an additional pantry and holds both Elby and Dena’s food on the lowest shelf. It also held the remains of Claire’s dog food, which Dena found and promptly shoved her head into to get to the remainder…. I was talking with the neighborhood kids, negotiating chocolate for work, when there was a horrific, loud CRASH. I spun around, closing the front door on the kids and there was Dena – backing into walls and closets, her tail thumping every surface with thrummmmming sound effects, in a total meltdown with a Beneful Dog Food – Original – bag over her head. Loud cries of distress from Dena – “Help me, help me, I can’t see, somebody turned off the lights!, HELP ME!” My first reaction was to scold her for once again getting into the food and the second was laughter – call me mean. It’s a human thing to laugh when someone slips on a banana peel or zooms around the room with a bag over their head. I took it off and suddenly she could see again. Ah, relief! Ordinarily, a greyhound caught out in mischief will retreat. You discipline a greyhound only with your voice. They are so sensitive and willing to please, the worst thing you can do is use the Voice of God. And you use it very rarely after the first few weeks of settling in, if even then. Dena stood her ground, eyed me in utter serious, clearing saying, “That was downright scary! Never do that to me again.”
One more adventure. I was working on the computer. I lit a cigarette and rested it in the ashtray, turning back to the computer. Not looking, I reached for it and it wasn’t there. Instantly fearing it had fallen on the carpet, I checked the floor. Nothing. I lift my gaze and see Dena, hips sashaying, walking back to the couch, my 120mm Capri cigarette dangling out of a corner of her mouth, correct end in her mouth, smoke lazily seeking the ceiling, looking for all the world like the coolest pool player in the room. I leapt across the room, removing it from her mouth – no resistance from Dena, just puzzlement. Such a fuss over a cigarette…. It wasn’t even wet. Such a dog!
As she appears to be such a lover of people, I am thinking of checking into her becoming a therapy dog, going into visit people in hospital or convalescent homes or seniors – or, with Dena, just about anybody. She’s not interested in long term relationships, just wants that pet and pat on the head, then moving on. She likes hugs, so that’s good. Wonder how she is with wheelchairs. Does she see them the same way she views cars? – each and every one of them of sniffing interest.
So, here’s the thing. Her name. Cannot stand it. I came up with Ella. Everyone, but one, liked it and voted for switching it. What say you? Will Ella be Dena by any other name? (vice-versa?) Grin. Stay tuned. Transmission ends. Word count: 895. And, thank you for reading all the way through.