Mama arrived on Saturday evening as the sun was dipping into the western sky and when she turned and looked at me her eyes glowed eerily amber in the twilight. She looked like a wild thing.
She is thin and wary. She never rests. She’s always at the ready to defend and she’ll fight to survive. Her fear rolls off her like a gust of wind that never weakens.
She is typhoon Nina – the second deadliest typhoon in recorded history. She was so devestating becasue she rolled in so hard and quick she destroyed the Banqiao Dam setting off a series of dam collapses throughout China killing over 100,000 people.
This is how abuse affects lives, its not the inital hit, but the rolling toll of continuing damage. Its the flooding, drowning and destruction. It takes years to re-build both the mind, body, soul, home and community.
But, when I call her quietly she slinks over and rolls onto her back for belly rubs . When I say her name her ears perk up and back and forward again which seems to start her tail wagging. Her whole body seems connected to the world, her surroundings, the earth. She makes me feel like she has an important secret she refuses to share, like the Mona Lisa. She has a tortured smile.
Kim calls her Precious, but I keep calling her Mama or Nina or Lisa. Kim says she was beaten badly, but her scars are not obvious like Buddy’s nose, ears and legs. Mama’s scars are deep and personal. They took all her puppies and destroyed them. They took them all, but Boston. Maybe he was hidden or maybe he was too fast, regardless of why, he survived.
Mama, Buddy and Boston were reunited on a quiet Saturday evening in August 2014. We watched in wonder hoping for magic and we weren’t disappointed. There was something about they way they touched, sniffed and bumped noses. Their movements were familiar and they took comfort in each other and in the green grass, fresh water and food. Staples and basics that had been missing from their lives.
Before Mama came to BCFS Buddy and Boston had a relaxed, happy calm energy. The played, but it was peaceful. They slept, sometimes together and sometimes separately. Buddy made his trip to the vet for his neuter, shots, microchip and heartworm test last Friday Aug, 22, 2014 and Boston missed him for the length of attention that a puppy can hold. Mama brought a frantic energy of defense.
The boys were suddenly on edge, not aggression, but a heightened awareness. Similar to when mom comes home from work and you’ve been watching TV relaxing rather than doing chores or cleaning your room. You get this sense that you’re in trouble.
Buddy was not at all what I expected – I expected a fearful, flighty dog, uninterested in people and Buddy is the complete opposite. He is friendly, gregarious, social and peaceful. He exudes confidence and joy. Every day is a gift for Buddy and every day without torture and pain is a day for rejoicing. His wounds have healed, but he is battle scarred. His muzzle is riddled with scars, his left front elbow is a little deformed, the scar on his hind right leg is thick and the hair may never grow back from the burns on his ears. Buddy holds none of his past. He’s living in the present, enjoying dog treats and a full belly.
He’s still waiting for his forever home where he can get all the attention. He wants a simple home and a simple life. He wants to sit beside your chair on the porch and watch the world go by. He wants to be your best friend and his love will come quickly – they never broke this dog. They bruised and scarred him, but he never broke. He is so strong, so amazing that I envy his forever home.
Boston is the puppy and he surprised me as well. Our vet estimates his age at 14 weeks and he’s a very happy playful puppy, but he’s a thief. He sneaks into the house through the dog door and retrieves any number of things from shoes and socks to my jeans and a few stuffed toys. He’s smart and quick and will need stimulation and guidance. He will need someone who is kind, patient and loving.
He wants to play and he wants attention. He needs a family who can dote on him and show him kindness and love. He will be the dog you want him to be and he’s ready to go home.
Of course I’d love to keep them all, but BCFS is merely a stop over, a way station on an epic journey for rescue dogs. We are an emergency room visit or a flop house for puppies on their journey to a forever home.
If you are interested in adopting any of the Northern Dogs please fill out an adoption application and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org BCFS – Adoption application