Sunday, July 08, 2007

This Post Is For the Dogs

Binky here, from 24/7. I'm sitting at Mrs. Chicky's place on a lazy Sunday morning. I brought my dog Roxie along. She's padding across the floors with her wiggle-butt in constant motion as she sniffs out clues as to the whereabouts of the two Chicky dogs. I also have reason to believe she is looking for Girl Scout Cookies.

This is a welcome moment of quietude amidst the chaos of moving week. On Friday, The Partner (that's what I call my husband of three years), The Boss (the toddling little girl who has been calling the shots around here for two of those three years), Roxie, and myself moved from a small, antique Cape Cod-style home to the place in which we hope to spend a couple decades, at least.

The sky on that moving day shone down in gray rays on my dog's head as she sat at the top of the hill, watching over movers as they emptied her home. The Partner and I took special care to make Roxie feel like a part of the goings-on. We were worried about her. Knowing the history of our sweet rescued pit bull, we thought that the roar of moving vans in New England might be, to her, like the slicing of helicopter blades is to those who found fear in the jungles or deserts. See, Roxie's first family moved away, too. But they left without her. They tied her to the fence in the backyard, where she remained affixed for two weeks. It was March.

One would think that neighbors on that Providence, RI, street would have unleashed her and taken her in, or called Animal Control. But maybe they were waiting for someone else to do it. Or maybe they were afraid of what the authorities would do to an abandoned pit bull. The latter is a valid concern; a vast majority of pit bulls who enter shelters in the United States are put to death.

But someone finally did cut the dog from her chains. Her compact body was two weeks' emaciated. She took to the streets, a skeleton with soft white and brown skin and a random assortment of black spots. It was at a construction site that she finally found the first stranger she could depend upon. A guy on the job patted the passenger seat of his pickup truck and invited her in. She hopped up. This man happened to know a woman who knew a woman who rescued pit bulls. The wheels were put in motion.

The rescuer named the dog Roxie. She found a foster home for Roxie with the owners of two other pit bulls. The foster family called their new charge "Roxie Amoxycillin" for all the meds they had to administer to get the dog's system back into functioning condition. Roxie thrived.

Then the rescuer found a permanent home for Roxie, with us. She's been a part of our family for three years. In her complete adoration of all things humankind, I see a walking definition of the term "unconditional." Instead of licking her scars, she licks people.

When we moved into our new home, we took Roxie on the tour. "This is your house!" we told her. She was cautious. She sniffed slowly. When we reached the expansive carpeting of our bedroom, we got down and rolled her onto her back so we could rub her tummy. She laid her head sideways on the floor as her skin stretched tight over a gaping jaw. "We're home!" we assured her, again.

It's our third day here, and Roxie is still getting her bearings. As I unpack the kitchen, then the den--sometimes Roxie's underfoot, sometimes not--I wonder how I can tell her, in no uncertain terms, that she will never have to worry about the March air at night as experienced through the chain links of a cold fence from which she cannot extricate herself.


wheatgerm said...

You are defitnitly in style

Girlplustwo said...

just like you, to house sit while moving yourself. and i'd not known that about roxie before now and it makes me so happy, that she's with you.

Girlplustwo said...

and Madame Chick would be oh so proud. probably already is.

Lawyer Mama said...

Poor Roxie! She's so lucky to have found such a great family.

I'm constantly bewildered by people who can be so casually cruel to animals.

Marty, a.k.a. canape said...

Dogs can be so resilient. And forgiving of humans.

Kudos to you and your family for being Roxie's forever home.

Amy said...

Just like you to take in an orphan. You're salty on the outside, but inside is a heart made of pure spun sugar.

Hope your house is feeling like a home.

Creative-Type Dad said...


Now I want Girl Scout cookies.

SUEB0B said...

That is really disgusting. Those people should go to prison.

I'm glad the story has a happy ending with good people for Roxie.

Jacquie said...

How can people be so cruel!!

Glad she has founf a loving home in you guys! Good for you! You guys ROCK!!!

S said...

What an uplifting -- and beautifully written -- story.

I was moved to tears by this:

I wonder how I can tell her, in no uncertain terms, that she will never have to worry about the March air at night as experienced through the chain links of a cold fence from which she cannot extricate herself.

I think you already have, Binky.

painted maypole said...

good for you for giving a dog a home. Pets are family. I understand.

flutter said...

breathtaking Roxie is as blessed as you are

carrie said...

What a lucky dog, to have found you.

Happy moving!


Fairly Odd Mother said...

What a beautiful tribute---I love that you rescued a pit bull. So many of those poor dogs deserve a chance.

ewe are here said...

I'll never never never understand how someone could do this to an animal.

I'm glad she's found her way to you.

Mauigirl said...

I'm so glad you rescued Roxie. I agree with ewe above, how can anyone do that to their faithful dog?

We adopted a pit bull mix from the local pound, who had been found wandering starving in the streets. We had her for 11 years, when we lost her too soon to cancer. She was a great dog. We loved her so much we adopted a full pit bull from a pit bull rescue organization two years ago; she is sweet as can be, a great dog. I hope you and Roxie have a wonderful life together.