We live near the beach in Pacific Grove, California. Monterey and Monterey Bay are our neighbors. This past Sunday morning I took our young Greyhound, Gertie, to the beach for a run. She had never been in the water and did not show any interest in going in until she spotted another dog chasing a stick into the ocean.
Like a lightning bolt, she shot into the waves to play with the other dog and, for the first time in her young life, she was submerged totally under a wave.
When she came out of the water she appeared to be stunned and after shaking herself off, she took off, ignoring my calls, and ran off the beach into parts unknown.
Bad news! I immediately called my wife, who was not too happy with me for letting Gertie off the leash. She was right, since we have had rescued Greyhounds for more than 20 years and I should have known better. We immediately marshaled a force of friends to find Gertie but we had no luck. Hours went by. I then put up more than 50 posters on poles everywhere and was hoarse after calling her name for hours while driving throughout the entire neighborhood.
By now it was after nine in the evening and my wife and I were exhausted and very sad. It went unsaid, but when we went to bed we were both convinced that we had seen the last of Gertie. Before turning in, though, we left the light on over the front door and left our gate open in the hopes that Gertie would find her way home.
I must have checked the front door 10 times during the night, but no Gertie. After a few restless hours I finally awakened at about 5 a.m. and went out to get the newspaper, feeling terrible and very sad. I opened the door, and to my surprise and delight, there was Gertie, looking tired and hungry but none the worse for wear!
I immediately woke my wife and the celebration began! It was probably the happiest day in our lives, and I’m certain Gertie felt the same. After eating a huge breakfast she went to her little bed and slept nearly all day.
So, here’s one story with a happy ending. Never underestimate the ability of a dog to make things right. Especially a “retreaded” dog.
As a PS: Gertie only rides on retreads, as does our little horse Lucy. More about Lucy another time.