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Bella, The flying Dog


Cricket and Bella do the sniff



            We first met Bella when she was four months old and too small for the pink harness tightened around her chest. She looked like a sling shot, popping out of the harness, leaping from it, trying to fly.

Bella is a tan and silver Yorkshire terrier mixed with some unknown, big-headed dog. She lives down the hill from us and we see her leaning out the passenger side window of the car when her family drives up the hill. She gets great joy out of hanging her head out of the window like a daredevil.

Cricket likes Bella, up to a point. She likes that they are the same size, and both girls. She likes that Bella seems happy and friendly. It’s only when Bella starts to invade personal space that Cricket rethinks her feelings. Cricket mistakes enthusiasm for aggression and growls, and Bella mistakes the growling for an invitation to play, which gets dangerous and requires lifting Cricket up so she doesn’t attack Bella with her teeth.

One day, we came home to find Bella running loose down the hill.          It was a shock to drive around the corner and see Bella running down the hill towards us. It was raining, just a little, but enough to make the sky grey and visibility a little muffled. Bella was racing down the middle of the street towards our car and her parents were waving frantically at us.

Mom parked the car at the top of the hill, in front of our house, and was about to walk down the hill to help, when Bella’s parents called out and asked if we could bring Cricket in case Bella would run to her and then be easier to catch. They told us that Bella had slipped her collar off and gone racing around the block.

Cricket was thrilled to have her leash put on and she was very excited to see Grandma and Bella’s Mom, and she seemed to know that something important was happening. Bella ran to Cricket right away and came almost close enough for us to grab her collar, but then she sped away again.

We created a three pointed trap, with Cricket and Grandma at one corner, then me and Bella’s Mom at the others, all blocking potential escape routes until Bella had no where to go. Bella was soaking wet after running through wet grass for half an hour. And once she was caught, her mom held her, belly and legs out and dangling, ready for the towel her Dad had brought out for her.

Cricket was ready to go for a walk of her own after all of that excitement, but I was wiped out. Just walking back up the hill was more than I could handle, once the adrenaline wore out. But I also wanted something more to happen. I’ve felt that way after every dog-saving event. It’s not that I want a reward, though a little statue of me catching the dog would be nice for the top of my bookcase. Cricket and I were at loose ends for a little while, but then we were ready for our afternoon nap. We were pooped.


The three girls, momentarily untangled

We met up with Bella the other day for the first time since Butterfly has been here. Bella was her rambunctious self and Cricket stood back a bit, but Butterfly went up close and examined her new friend. She stood there without budging, no matter how many times Bella raced from side to side and flattened into play pose.

Eventually, Bella calmed down, and Cricket inched forward, and the three of them did some mutual sniffing. Butterfly didn’t seem to mind being the peacemaker between Cricket and Bella. She accepted their different energies and knew how to manage them. She’s very Zen.


Zen Butterfly

About rachelmankowitz

I am a fiction writer, a writing coach, and an obsessive chronicler of my dogs' lives.

13 responses »

  1. Kaci is getting better with other dogs. I would be scared also if I were cooped up in a pen with a lot of big dogs on death’s row in a kill shelter. Traumatic.Me, I take on the energy of every dog I meet-I can be aggressive to an agressive dog and wonderful to a wonderful dog.

    • The girls just spent the afternoon with an active Labrador puppy. Cricket barked and chased and treated the whole thing like a war. Butterfly stood nearby, looking on, and wondered what all the fuss was about. She even let my five year old nephew pick her up and carry her around under her armpits. Seriously Zen.

  2. As the owner of a big hound dog who occasionally escapes and stays just out of reach for days, I can empathize well with this adventure! Happy that it turned out well for all concerned.

  3. Oh, a statue! I like the idea, but on second thought, a cash award is nice too–nothing too extravagant you understand, but enough for, say, bus fare (as part of your all expense paid trip to a European capital of your choosing).

  4. Yes, you deserve the statue!!!! So glad every pup is safe and snuggling in their warm home!

  5. I think a statue of you saving the dog would be a perfect thing 😀

  6. Thanks for stopping by my blog. This is so funny because I know a different Bella and she is a Yorkshire too. Must be a popular name for them. lol

    • It’s just nice to know that the humans think all of their dog babies are beautiful! Maybe with the Yorkies it’s about that supermodel hair; all of that silver and gold, permanently windswept.

  7. Tweeted this and two others, Rachel 🙂


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