Pink Phizz

Thursday, May 26, 2005

The Mad Hatter

I think it's only fitting that our mutt, affectionally known to this journal as the Mad Hatter, should have a place here. In order to understand how we came about naming him after this character for this purpose, I suppose I should tell you a little bit about his background, hence his personality.

Back in November of 2003, and I'll admit it, I decided that I was in dire need of a four-legged companion so when Walrus was out producing the bacon I wouldn't be alone. I would have opted for a kitten/cat. But nooo. Walrus wouldn't have any of that nonsense. He is a dog person. Okay, that's fine with me. So then I was thinking more on the lines of a nice big dog. Someone that I wouldn't have to bend down to scratch their ears. Someone who would fill our home with his presence, if only through their sheer size. You know something like a Lab, Retriever, or a Shepard. But nooo. Walrus wouldn't have any of that. He likes little dogs like Terriers, or Jack Russell types.

So what did we get, you might ask? Well, we got the smallest dog I have ever had. And we got the largest dog Walrus has ever had. We got a terrier mutt. He looks like a cross between a Border Terrier and an Airdale. And he managed to inherit the worse of both characters all rolled into one. At least when he is on the loose.

But I digress, where was I. Oh, so back in November of 2003, Walrus and I went a hunting for the perfect dog, a mutt. We went to three rescue centers. Just to look, you understand. At the first two, I found some that I really liked, but didn't like Walrus. Walrus found some that he really liked, but I didn't like. (Side note: Funny how many dogs don't like men, but they all seem to like women. Smart dogs, I'd say.) Anyway, as it's said, third time's a charm. We went to the furtherest rescue center from us, Viking Oaks, to be precise, and lo and behold there was our dog. Well, the dog I fell in love with. He was so cute. Just kinda sitting there with this mournful look on his face (one, I might add, we have later learned he must have practiced in front of a mirror because he has shown us that he can turn it on and off like a light bulb). I would like to say that Walrus fell for him too, instant like, but nooo, it didn't happen quite that way.

Anyway, so here is this poor little mutt, sitting in the corner of his cage, looking like he has just lost his best friend. A sorry, miserable sight; probably the worse I have ever witness in all my years on this green earth. The dogs to the right of him and to the left were just barking like there was no tomorrow. They didn't have the look of sorrow about them at all, not at all. The mutt must have kept his secret, "the look," to himself. Finally, the mutt called to us. Just some short little barks. So we answered.

"Oh, Walrus! I like that one! He's so cute!"
"That one?"
"Yeah, that one. He's not to big for you, is he?"
"Uh, noooo."
"Well, com'on, let's get the lady to let us see him."
"Right."

So with that, the woman put a leash on the mutt and away we went. Literally. The mutt took off like a shot. The mutt damn near pulled Walrus's arm right outta his socket. In fact, for about five minutes, until he could equalize his arms by pulling it back into place, Walrus's arm was dragging the ground. It was one of the funniest sights I have ever witness. And by laughing, I told him so.

Needless to say, Walrus was not amused.

"Alice! We are not getting a dog now. You are going back to the States for a visit, and I will not have a strange dog in the house, alone, while you are gone. God know's what he'll do while the house is empty!"

That was Walrus putting his foot down. This is me, sitting in the car. For my part, dead silence.

"You are gonna pout now, right?"
"But Walrus! If we don't take him today, someone else will get him."
"I doubt that."
"Oh com'on; someone will come along and fall in love with him, just like us."
"Correction, I am definitely not in love with that dog. He damn near pulled my arm off!"
"All right, we won't get him." (sob, sob)

We got the mutt. That day. Brought him home. He was so cute. Found out that he was about six years old. House trained. Could sit. Lie down on command. Perfect. Wow. Then we took him out for his first walk. Decided to let him go; because, afterall, Walrus's last dog walked next to him.

Always. Naturally, right?

The Mad Hatter struck. He did a runner. I figured out that day that Walrus should have been a rugby player. Wow, could he run and block! Admiring his tackle of the mutt, I innocently asked him how he learned to do that. He just stared a me. And blinked.

It's been two years now since we got the mutt, the Mad Hatter. We let him go in the woods now. To run. He never walks with us. Sometimes we see a flash of tan fur go streaking by, and we are assured that it is the mutt. Finally, when he is exhausted with his tongue hanging out, we are able to entice him back on to his lead. And then he pulls one of us all the way home. Maybe someday, his body won't be able to cash in on the cheques that his mind is writing, and he will sedately walk along with us like we see all the other dogs in the woods do with their owners.

"Ah, huh."

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