Written by Lisa Kennedy of California (USA)
I am blessed to live in coastal far northern California amidst the towering redwoods. Some time ago, I was working an early shift at the local casino and saw a dog sleeping on the speed bump behind the parking lot. She was a white and black border collie and ran off when I tried to approach her.
I asked around at work and lots of people had seen the dog but no one knew anything about her. After that first day, I began seeing her every morning and started arriving at work a few minutes early to try to coax her to me. She was matted and dirty and very skittish.
I Brought Her Food Every Morning
I began carrying a big bag of kibble in my car and fed her every morning. I was never able to convince the dog to come to me or to even let me get close, but I decided to name her Lucky since she was living at a casino.
I contacted animal control and the SPCA, but because Lucky was on tribal land, all hands were tied. I contacted the tribal office and they said I could have the dog if I caught her but they had no resources to help and no contract with county animal control.
I brought out treats and toys and tried everything I could to win her over to no avail. So she and I settled into a routine: every day I would show up early and put out a pie tin of dog kibble and talk to her and tell her she was a good dog and call her Lucky dog. Then I would back away and wait. She was so leery that she would let the crows and ravens eat the dog food if I stayed too close. In fact, she would wait until I was pretty far away before she would come and eat from the tin. This was the standoff from the beginning of April through the end of August.
I Woke With a Sudden Need to See Her
Then one afternoon I had taken a nap on my day off and woke up at about 4 pm and had a sudden need to go feed Lucky. I jumped in my car and went over to the casino and went and sat in the grass near her speed bump. I began tossing out kibbles and talking to her. She started circling in and after about 45 minutes she kind of slunk in and crawled over to me and rolled over on her back in complete submission. She had finally decided I was hers!
I didn’t have a leash or anything so I just started petting her and slowly slipped off my sweatshirt and looped it around her neck and made a harness to guide her to my car. I opened the door and she jumped right in and sat up and all was good.
She’d Made Her Choice
On closer inspection, I could see that she was covered with fleas and ticks and burrs and mats. She had an old wound on the inside of her right rear leg and it resembled a bb gun pellet or something similar. I drove her to county animal control and even though it was closed, I convinced an officer there to scan her for a micro chip. She had none. He said I couldn’t drop her off till they opened the next morning, Monday. I said no way. I was keeping her, or rather, she was keeping me!
I brought her home and locked her away from the other critters at our house and brought her into my bathroom and gave her the full beauty treatment, which she seemed to enjoy. I kept her isolated in case she had any diseases or parasites and the next morning I took her to the vet and she got all of her shots and a clean bill of health. We then went home and introduced her to the other critters in my family and there was not one squabble or growl.
It was meant to be. Lucky has been with us about 7 years now and is constantly at my side. I think I am really the lucky one.