21 December 2010

I totally thought we were done with this phase of Gustavo's life but here we go again.

OK. We have gone on walks here for all of Gustavo's life. His life here, in the Estados Unidos, with me, where no one burns him with matches and we use this thing called "Recalls".

Perhaps you have heard of this thing, Recalls, Gustavo? Because we practice them EVERY SINGLE DAY. And they had been becoming quite reliable. Working even in the presence of forest bunnies.

Also, you can't see it from my map, but on the other side of the field is the Marine Lab. Where they study all things from the sea. There are whale skeletons there, and behind the locked, high walls, I think they have Flipper in there.

I'm sure Flipper asked to live in a little tank to be studied. Isn't that who figured out clicker training? People training dolphins in horrible little tanks? Plus, where else do you go to see the festive whale lighting at Christmas time?

But I digress. I change the subject. I am glad no one fell off the cliff.

But, hello. Pick up the clue phone, Gustavo. Now I have to worry about you out there by the whale skeletons? Because you want to escape the beautiful open space for a MOBILE HOME PARK?

That's right. A Doppleganger.

So here's where the story becomes more tiresome. He is running which way and that because his mind has been BLOWN and he is running amuck in a mobile home park with a million streets covered in a million mobile homes and my Doppleganger is trying to be helpful but as far as I can tell she was just in there collecting sticks or something from under mobile homes.

He is captured, and she accompanies us back out to the field, where her horrible little dog, about the same level of horribleness as Otterpop, who by this time has been elevated to fricking saint, one step below Sister Mary Ruby who also would NEVER do anything like this and still can't walk and who doesn't even know what's going on because she's sleeping quietly in the car, is going after anyone else who happens to be walking out there in the field.

And it's about to rain. And it wasn't easy to capture Gustavo because of his blown mind and he knew he had been very, very naughty. And my Doppleganger is walking with us and has now invited us to a ping pong match. She has captured her own horrible little dog at this point from going after walkers and he is confined to a leash, as is Gustavo. I am so mad I cannot speak, so it's lucky that my Doppleganger speaks a lot. Very much. Without ceasing. All the way up to the road.

I am walking like this. Can you see? I think it's sort of stomping. I stomp my foot, into the mud, with each and every step. I am MAD.

Because no one. No one I know. Not a single one. Has a dog who will risk his life, nearly jumping off a cliff, to escape nature to get into a mobile home park. The end.


vici whisner said...

I feel your pain. Leashes are not so bad and Gustavo will survive the leash. I'm not sure you will survive the no leash.

I can't even imagine how scary that was. But maybe someone was cooking sausages or B-B-Q and he couldn't resist.

Anonymous said...


You have been suffering greatly of late: Ruby's leg goes wonky; Otterpop jumps on the Buffet Table; and now Gustavo throws himself off a steep cliff to run away to the Mobile Home Park.

May all your troubles disappear, leaving only good will and cheer.

Elf said...

Dang dogs who do this sort of thing! Tika is drawn to gaps in or around fences like a moth to a flame. Doesn't matter if this side is a huge big green park with grass and gophers to chase and the other side is a busy 6-lane road. I sometimes have nightmares. And sometimes it turns out I'm actually awake. Boost never goes through gaps in or around fences. I empathize but I have no easy solution at hand.

Jodi,eh? said...

OK, I may have touched an art-nerve, though I find rear-cross threadles more anxiety provoking than exhibitions. Mary's app idea gets my vote. I am sorry that Gustavo has made you so upset, but from where I'm from, there are football fields of folks who leave nature and living in the country for mobile home living. Is it possible that Gooey's Canadian?

Cedarfield said...

There's nothing like that feeling of rage and relief you get when your dog is finally back with you after pulling a stunt like that. A real adrenalin-cortisol cocktail.

maryclover said...

I vote apps too. Or a podcast. Is your speaking voice as stream of consciousness as your writing? I am going to find an app maker.

Sorry Gustavo went rogue (or rouge as one Ms Palin would say). Scout, who is not a troublemaker, has on occasion decided that his really reliable recall is surely meant for another dog, and gone off the edge of a cliff or two. Which in our case is an extremely busy street that is out of the park boundaries. At those times of elevated heart rate, I can only hope it counts as my aerobic exercise for the day.

Gail Mahood said...

I'm so glad Gustavo was retrieved unharmed. Gwyny got away today too--taking advantage of my inattention to a cracked-open door while I cleaned house in honor of the solstice--the most important holiday of the year. Very scared she'd get hit by a car. Ran around the neighborhood calling, calling. Nothing, but then she appeared on her own. Such relief. Now I'm watching her like a hawk because we live amidst many mushrooms.
How is Ruby doing?

Elf said...

@Mary re speaking voice: Yes! It can be! Don't you hate people who are not only funny in writing, but in person, too?

team small dog said...

I'm an app for that. Nice ring to it. Ya'all let me know how that goes.

Maybe Gustavo heard that all the Canadians flee nature for mobile home parks! He is totally down with the Canadians. Jodi I would totally rather do a rear cross threadle than have another art show!

I figured Gustavo was the only dog to ever run away. The other dogs would never do this! But really. Would your guys dogs run away into a MOBILE HOME PARK?

Ruby is doing better! She walks weird, but it is less lame now and more like, weird. She is still on all her drugs, and she is walking all the way around the corner every day now! About 2-3 minutes. I am hoping this weird, sideways, butt tuck walk goes away soon? She sure is being a good girl about it all.

Jodi,eh? said...

WARNING...this may sound preachy. I have 2 dogs, one chased squirrels,bikes and deer when she was young. She now lives her life on a leash. My other dog was never given the chance to chase anything. He now lives his life off leash. My now leashed Terv would chase a squirrel from nature to a mobile home park in a heartbeat. My other dog would not. Just the facts.
Happy to hear about mobile Ruby!

team small dog said...

I hear ya, preacher. Gustavo, for at least a year, has worn his forest walking leash everywhere he can't give me eye contact. It only comes off when he can look at me and do multiple recalls on forest leash. Many times, it doesn't come off at all.

Forest walking leash is my fancy name for a long rope.

But yeah, for a long time in his first year with me he just was always with Otterpop, and I mistook Otterpop's lovely, reliable recall for his. Big mistake. Because one time he ran away out of the forest. Then I started forest walking leash.

His mobile home park escape though, from his normal running field where has demonstrated lovely recalls, even from the bunny chasing bushes! Where he looks at me and can even do fancy dog obedience heeling near bunny bushes!

So super bummerness of despair of ever hoping to have trained dog.

Although, Ruby I never thought would have recall due to horrible chasing of moving objects and she is Sister Mary Ruby of perfectness.

Otterpop probably has best genuine trained recall of anyone due to meanness. Had Gustavo been mean and horrible and rotten, maybe I would have taken his dog training more seriously. Definitely big time fail in his recall department, clearly.

I won't give up on him, although we go back to square one of recalls again. Again. And on the forest walking rope he goes, even at the whale skeletons now.

Super bummerness!

vici whisner said...

I was recently talking to one of the other Laura's. I confessed to her that I was on a walk with Fin and broke down in tears because her reactivity was getting considerably worse. I fear that my rewards are making her seek reactive items so that she can pay attention and get rewarded.
So in her infinite wisdom, Laura says, "Vici, Why don't you walk her with a head halter." I say, "Because my fantasy walk is to have her walk with me on her hiking harness and we both have a great time."
You can imagine the look I got.
So, Now we walk with a head halter. She gets her walk. I"m not a head case. It isn't my fantasy, but it is exercise and I don't come home an emotional noodle.

Lisa said...

Sometimes you can just kill - em. I've been in several similar situations...and it's not easy.

Glad you caught Gooey