Our new human had the face of a pup thrown into a room full of kittens.
As I was saying before, our human — Maya, had an emergency trip to England. She left us with Mandy who was just called out to fight a fire. We left off waiting for the new person — Steve.
There we were, Riva and I, oh — by the way, Riva came to us from what my human calls “a rescue place”. Riva isn’t what she was called when she came to live with us. We had to change her name because it reminded her too much of her awful past. Riva is a retired racing Greyhound. Sleek, beautiful and quick as lightning. Quiet and polite. Well, except for her nauseating gas.
Anyways, Riva and I were helping Mandy with getting things ready for the new person to take over. We sniffed all around the yard, front and back, to make sure no wild animals had sneaked in. We moved the pillows off of the couch so they wouldn’t get in any one’s way if they wanted to stretch out. And while we were telling the outside dogs to stop their ridiculous barking, the new guy pulled up to our house.
He wasn’t very friendly. He didn’t try to pet us and he didn’t seem to notice how wonderful, smart, playful, and beautiful we are. No, he seemed only interested in Mandy. His eyes kept searching all around. His eyebrows got scrunched and he kept fussing with his phone, his fingers trying to move as fast as Mandy spoke. And that girl sounded like a Chihuahua with its’ tail on fire!
“Use the big, F-350 truck for taking the dogs or any other house-related needs, feed and water the dogs in their kennels. Pick up their poop and put it into the old dog food bags. Feed Kitcat, who might have kittens under the deck, in the garage. She gets wet food in the morning and a bowl of dry food. Let the chickens out. Give them your scraps, the pellets, calcium, grain, and water. Put them away at night and collect the eggs and lock the door so nothing gets to them at night. Got that?” Mandy said all that in one breath.
They walked out of the yard and went over to the kennel. Of course, Riva and I tagged along. We couldn’t wait to hear what Mandy had to say about those delinquents.
The instructions came in a shotgun blast: “Don’t let Wombles, Rhonda or Dotty out when the chickens are out because they will attack them. But Jama, Sissy, and Whitey, who stay in the other kennel, are okay to be out when the chickens are out. Oh, and Wombles, Rhonda and Riva ride in the cab of the truck. Jama too, I think. Noodles, the inside cat gets her food and water in the closet. She likes to lie on your face in the morning. Clean her box daily. And give Riva her medicine twice daily. Two half pills each time. She and Allie stay in the house. They can sleep in your room with you if you don’t mind them crowding the bed. Collect the mail from the post office once in a while. Take the horses some grain if you want. They live somewhere else. “Now, let’s go hiking.”
“Wait. Go over that again!” the new human’s eyes made him look like a praying mantis as he wagged his head around so fast you’d thought he saw a squirrel.
Hike? Did I hear her say “Let’s take a hike”? I love hikes! The air is loaded with so many interesting smells and cool stuff to dig up! Plus, I get to be the herding girl I was raised to be! And herding those other dogs is a big, important job! Mandy would never survive without me keeping the others in line.
Mandy was off in her own world and paid little attention to me or Steve as we hiked around the hillside. She charged up the hills, burping and cussing like, well, I guess like a seasoned firefighter. Me, I had to go back to Steve over and over to encourage him to keep up. He was out of breath after the first 20 steps. He still looked like a pup who lost his mommy.
It was a fun hike. Not too long. Hey, I’m not saying I was getting tired or anything like that. It’s that, well, I’m concerned about the others. Especially Riva. Her front left paw was sore from a cut she got crossing a barbed-wire fence a few days ago. I hate those things! Unless my back itches. Then I love them! Ohhh, it feels so good to scrunch down a bit and get a good rubbing.
Back at the house, we let Mandy and Steve sit next to us on the deck. I really needed more time to train Mandy better. Once again, she let the rest of the pack out of their kennels. Of course, they ran right to the back of the neighbor’s fence barking like Hyenas. So childish!
Steve walked around the next morning, mumbling to himself. I can’t understand why he had such a hard time. I thought he’s what my human, Maya, would call a “special” person. He certainly seemed a bit dull to me.
He kept saying everyone’s names wrong. Except for mine and Riva’s of course. We’re easy to remember. I have a short tail and I kept close to him all the time to make sure he didn’t get into trouble. And Riva, well Riva is the only one of us who isn’t a cattle-watcher. Oh! And I have a special skill. I can poop and walk at the same time! I’m proud of that because it means I don’t waste any time. I never leave my human behind!
I should introduce you to my pack. My story involves them a lot. Don’t worry, it’s easy to remember them.
There’s Jama, and Sissy, who is mommy to Whitey and Rhonda, and then Dotty, mother of Wombles, the only male. See? Easy.
Wombles is a funny name if you ask me. Maya told me she named him after a furry animated character of an English Kids’ TV show. It was fun to watch the “tellie” with Maya when the nights were too cold to go out sniffing. I miss her.
Rhonda, on the other hand, got her name from the badass WWE wrestler, Rhonda Rousey. She was fun to watch! I’d growl at any of those mean girls that tried to beat her up and Maya would tell me I was a good protector. I knew that though.
I bet you can guess how Dotty and Whitey got their names. Those are proper dogs’ names. Easy to remember. I must say that I do like Riva’s name. “Riva” is Latin for regaining strength. And that’s what she has been doing for four years now.
I’m guessing that Sissy and Allie are just great names picked out for two of the world’s best companions. Steve likes us the best. I can tell these things.