Hello. My name is Ziva. Not the one from NCIS, but Ziva the dog. A big black dog. I like long walks in the park, long naps, poetry, yogurt, cat food, cheese, weenies, and pretty much anything that falls on the floor when a person is eating. I live in a house with some very nice people who bailed me out of jail after I robbed a convenience store in Deer Island about 4 years ago. It was my third offense and I was headed for the compound from which no dog returns. I was resigned to my fate. I was headed for the big doghouse in the sky.
Then Diane showed up. I had seen so many people come and go during my time at the animal shelter that when she passed my cage I didn’t even do the “puppy dance of joy” to indicate my desire to be rescued. But she looked. Then she stopped and touched me. I still wasn’t convinced this was anything special, but it was nice to be touched, even if briefly. Then she left, as they all do eventually.
But, she returned a short time later with this old grey haired guy and they walked right over to my cage! For a moment I wondered if my food had been spiked with something, causing me to hallucinate. But, no! The old guy actually opened the cage, and sat on the floor to greet me. I really didn’t know what to do because that had never happened before. So, I licked him. Then I did the “puppy dance of joy”, even though I was long past being a puppy, and flopped into his lap. Then I reached up and licked him again as he rubbed that special spot on my tummy. I may have even peed a little. I don’t remember, because the next half hour was a blur. Papers were signed, I was shackled to a lease, and led from the facility, through the front door! I’d never been out that door. Actually, I’d never seen that door because six months earlier I was brought in the back door.
They put me in a car and we drove away. I was apprehensive, because no one told me where were headed, and getting in a car without that information is a little unsettling. For anyone.
After a short ride, we stopped in front of this huge house. I caught a peek of a fenced back yard, with a low fence, and thought to myself, “This might be OK because if things turn bad I can jump that fence no sweat and head for the hills.” I really didn’t think all of that, of course, because I’m a dog. I did see the fence, though.
The back yard wasn’t large, but big enough to give my nose a run for the money. And, they had another dog so I had a new friend! How exciting. And cats! They had cats! I love cats because the taste like chicken. I’m kidding there. I don’t know if they taste like chicken or not, because I’ve never tasted a chicken. I’m really not big on anything that doesn’t ‘crunch’ when I eat it since that time I ate a snake and six yellow jackets. I was really hungry at the time and didn’t put a lot of thought into what I was eating. It was a lesson I’ve never forgotten. I suppose you might find that funny, coming from someone who has no qualms about snatching up tootsie roll from a litter box. I didn’t think I would like them either, but they’re actually quite tasty.
The family assimilated to my needs fairly quickly, and they had little kids that visited from time to time that helped break up the long quiet spells. That was always fun because they would run and play with me and I taught them to throw things so I could chase them. They learned very quickly.
After a while we moved to another house with a bigger yard. I had the family conditioned to trusting me so it was a piece of cake to escape the yard and tour the neighborhoods. Once I was gone for two whole days. It wasn’t all fun, however, because I got trapped under the porch of an abandoned house. There were a lot of people looking for me, and I heard them, but I didn’t say anything because I just knew I was in deep kimchi. That’s a Korean delicacy made out of rotten cabbage and not something you want to be “deep” in. It is however, in small portions, a nice compliment to a really good steak, cooked or not.
My people put up a fence to try and contain me, but fences can’t hold me. No sir. They had no idea how high I can jump when I put my mind to it. I can jump really, really high. Especially when I’m scared, or excited. Once they determined that putting up a fence was a total waste of time, they removed a large part of it thereby eliminating the challenge of escaping. So I just stayed home from then on. Oh, there’s been a time or two when I’ve chased off a random cat, or a coyote, but I come right back.
A couple of months ago Diane started feeding stray cats, which I thought was just dandy. I said I love cats, but I only really love the ones that run. Then I can chase them. One of them, however, became a favorite and quit running. So, we didn’t chase it. Now it’s moved into the house. That’s not a big deal, however, because she doesn’t eat my food. The other big dog won’t let her.
I forgot to mention the annoying little black dog. I’m not sure what he is but he’s got a very shrill voice and he uses it a lot. I tell him to shut up all the time but he obviously doesn’t understand big dog talk. Another thing that annoys me, a lot, is when I’m going to the bathroom. I mean, there’s not a lot of privacy to begin with, but it’s very difficult to pee when you have an annoying little dog sniffing your butt. I’ve toyed with the idea of running a short distance and stopping real fast to see if I can get his nose stuck in my butt, but I don’t know how I would get him out of there because I don’t have opposing thumbs. I guess Panzee, the other big dog here, could yank him out with her teeth, or I could just do an ass whip and see how far I can toss him … hey, that sounds like fun! I’m going to try that the next time we go out.
This is me just after I finished my morning yogurt exercises. As I recall, I was asking whoever took the picture where my coffee was. I hadn’t had any yet.
So, life is good for me. I’m happy and I get lots, and lots of sleep. No sir, it doesn’t get any better than this. You should be so lucky.