If you follow me on Twitter or happen to be a Facebook friend, you know what I’m talking about. And thank you for all your concerns and kind words. But here’s the whole story:
We are assholes of the dog owner world. Anybody could have made the mistake we made but I still feel like an asshole. A big one.
We had plans of visiting friends in Indianapolis on Saturday. So like any other time we go out of town, we were making our way to my in-laws with the doggins [because they like the doggins as much as we do]. We usually drive the dogs in my Honda but that day we were going to take the hubs’ car, a 4-door sedan, that the dogs have never been in. So we’re heading down Shelbyville Road, a road that has four lanes and a turning lane, going about 35mph. The BDD is doing her usual Tarzan calls from the back seat – we’re trying our best to ignore her. The back window starts rolling down. At first I’m all, “WTF?” And then I look at Mike, “What are you doing?!?” He yells back he wasn’t doing anything and pulls over.
Two words flash in my mind: oh shit.
The child-lock on the windows wasn’t on. I’ll be damned if we didn’t think about that BEFORE the window started rolling down. That damn BDD had her foot on it and that window just zoopt on down. And out she went. The hubs had the car over in an instant, jumped out after her – she had gone to the right where the grass was. But in a nanosecond (I seriously didn’t see any of this because I was going ape shit), she dashes across all five lanes, so does Mike and they’re gone. I get in the car, pull the car over and search for them – I didn’t see them anywhere.
I finally caught up with the hubs; he was at the very back of the car dealership on the other side of the street. The BDD bolted on him. Poof! Poor Chase is just sitting in the backseat, not knowing what in the world is going on. Mike continued on foot, I took the car and we both search for our big deaf dog for 40 minutes. No dice. We go home to let Chase out of the car and Mike takes it right back out. I make “Lost Dog” signs which I have to say is one of the most pathetic-feeling things I’ve ever done. At least when I’m looking for her, my mind is somewhere else. Making a flier is horrible – I sat there and cried while staring at that big smiling mug of the BDD’s. “Why BDD? Why did you run away? I thought we had a good thing going? Dammit dog.”
Wiping my tears, my nose, and my guilt on my sleeve, I get the fliers done; I drove off myself to tape them up on stop signs in the area she escaped to.
Twelve signs. That’s how many I put up. Driving past them sent me into tears. But 30 seconds after I passed the hubs and hung up sign #12, my phone rang. Unknown caller. “Yeah, I saw your sign…” He had her. Well, would you look at that… more tears. Shocker.
Apparently my BDD waltzed up to the back door of an apartment dweller. The apartments butt right up next to the Toyota dealership Chevy ran through. These kind people let her in. Checked her out. Read her tag and see that she’s deaf. (Her tags say “I’m deaf & can’t hear”.) And they call the number on the tag. Yeah… about that number… we decided to cancel our home phone last week… we can say “disconnected”. (Like I said, we’re assholes.) They call the vet’s number on the other tag; the vet won’t release our information. This nice man decides to take the BDD in the car with him, see if he can find anyone looking for a dog. (Which by the way, if he was aware of the sounds that dog makes in the car, he wouldn’t have done that.) But I’m glad he did; he stopped at the main office and saw the sign I posted in the mail area. And called me.
She jumped out of the window of a moving car. She darted across five lanes of traffic. She can’t hear her name being called. She was gone for 2½ hours. I was certain she’d be struck by a car since we have that whole “deaf” thing going on. I was wrong. And I’m so effing happy that I was wrong.
I pulled in the culdesac of the apartment and some fella I didn’t know was walking my dog. I told him the story, he wowed and was so so kind and then I broke down again (it pretty much became the theme of my day) and I gave him a huge hug. Chevy jumped in the car. We drove away. And her clanging cries of joy took over our car ride. But she was safe. And I kept crying. No surprise there.
The BDD is fine. It doesn’t appear that she broke anything but toenails. She has a few scrapes of road rash and I’m sure she has some bruises. But she’s fine. Better than fine since some days have passed.
How does this happen? How does a deaf dog defy the odds of being hurt when she did what she did? I can’t get over that. All I do know is that someone was kind enough to take my dog in for an hour, do everything in their power to reach out to us and then we got lucky. Lucky indeed. Maybe we should change her nickname to BLDD.
(Yes, new dog tags were made that day for both doggins; the new phone number is stamped on them. And yes, we do plan on changing how we transport the dogs. We clearly haven’t learned everything yet when it comes to owning a big dog. A dog with enough weight to open electronic windows and lock doors accidentally. All I ask is you not judge us. It was scary – I am mad enough at myself; I don’t need someone to give me an ear full – and I’m fixing it. I just hope others can learn from our 2½ hour panic session. Because it completely sucked. And we got really, really lucky.)