A Dog Story

Tuesday, January 24, 2012
"You didn't tell Jack's story," Andy said, looking up from reading through Thursday's post.

It's true, when I posted the picture of Jack, the little Shetland sheep dog I dogsat on and off this weekend, I just didn't have time to share Jack's dramatic little tale.

Get your hankies, folks. Here comes a dog story ala James Herriot and Greyfriars Bobby.
Jack belongs to an elderly couple who live on the other side of our lake. In the last couple years, both of Jack's owners have been dealing with some major, serious illnesses. Then, after the Mrs. had been moved into an assisted living facility, the Mr. drove into town with Jack when they were in a single vehicle accident. The vehicle rolled multiple times while Jack bounced around like a ping-pong ball inside. Eventually the vehicle wrapped itself around a rock. 

Amazingly, both Jack and his owner survived. There were lots of broken bones and bruises on both counts. Although Jack popped right out of the damaged vehicle and was walking on the side of the road when the emergency vehicles arrived, he was rushed to emergency surgery where his spleen was removed.   

That accident changed a lot of things for Jack. Once he and his owner had recovered, his owners moved to a nearby city where it's easier for them to receive care and assistance for the time being. Unfortunately, Jack couldn't come with. Jack's owners hope to return to their home in the woods some day, but until they do, one of our neighbors up here is taking care of Jack. Jack visits his owners from time to time and according to all accounts, it's those reunions when he's happiest. 

I shared my dog sitting duties this weekend with another neighbor who lives not far from Jack's owners' place. While Dogsitter 2 was at work, yet another neighbor came over to let Jack out. (Jack's kind of a community dog by this point.) Dogsitter 2 always keeps Jack on a leash when he's let out, but the neighbor just let Jack out, assuming he'd do his business and head back inside. (This is a fair assumption as Jack usually does do this.) Instead, Jack took off down the road. The neighbor called and called, but Jack would not come back.

By the time Dogsitter 2 returned, the neighbor was panicked.

"Don't worry," said Dogsitter 2. "I think I knew where he is."

Dogsitter 2 walked over to Jack's owners' house. There were little pawprints leading up the steps to the front door of the dark house where Jack had pawed at the door, hoping to be let in. The pawprints then went back down the steps and wound underneath the porch. When Dogsitter 2 peer beneath the porch, he found Jack sitting underneath the porch where his pen used to be, his tail wagging like mad, waiting.

It's been months since the accident, but puppy dogs never give up hope on their beloved owners returning.

I told you that you'd need hankies.

P.S. Remember how I felt Jack was less than thrilled with how we spent Thursday? (And for the record: slow cooker yogurt was a bust.)

Don't worry. I totally won him over on Sunday.


  1. I admit it. I didn't take you seriously about the hankie. But you were right.... is it strange that I am inspired by a dog?!

  2. haha oh I love a puppy story :)

  3. Oh, so sweet, he just want's to go home. He's pretty lucky he has such kind neighbors to look after him.

  4. Glad you warned us about a hankie! Wow. Sweet thing. I'm so glad your community has rallied around for him and his owners.

  5. ohhhh, puppy puppy. poor little guy. i do hope that his owners can at least spend more time with him soon!

  6. Aww Jack is like a miracle puppy, what an awesome doggy!!

  7. Tears AND chills! What an amazing story. Animals are so incredible. And Jack is obviously a special one.

    Thanks for sharing this.

  8. Really sweet and nicely told.
    (regarding yogurt--I tried it once and was also disappointed, though I didn't use a cooker; I kind of wonder if it's too cold and dry in winter for yogurt to do its thing).

  9. I am so very sorry for Jack and his owners. Yet grateful for him having you guys! It is incredible that all of you care for him! You people up there in Minnesota are quite remarkable!


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