An inside dog accepts his fate
I was on the side porch last night when a thought came to me about our dog, DeDe.
It sure was nice to have an outside dog who would wander around the woods behind our house and in our yard. She never has the desire to run off down the road or leave the neighborhood.
Whenever we pull up to the house, DeDe comes running from around a corner or from behind a tree to greet us. You can make a bet that DeDe will be there anytime you arrive.
As I sat in my glider last night, enjoying the cool breeze, DeDe came up on the porch. She nestled her nose on my bare feet and just took a seat by me.
It’s nice to have a dog that is just a good old country dog who stays home, only wanders occasionally and always wants a little company.
Growing up, I had a few outside dogs. But for the most part, my dogs stayed inside.
Momma always had those “lap dogs.” Her little Shih Tzus were the princesses of the house. Their bottom of their paws only touched carpet and fresh cut grass. Their water was cool and clean. Their food came out of a plastic dispenser. And they slept on a soft cushion or fluffy comforter.
Maw Maw always had outside dogs. The bottom of their paws were used to gravel, weeds, rocks and dirt. Their water had an occasional leaf or bug in it. Their food was either out of a plastic bowl or simply lumped together on the ground as scraps. And they slept under a concrete carport or in the driveway.
Maw Maw hated inside dogs. She said dogs had no place in the house. But that changed the day Roho arrived at our house on Nobles Road in Monticello.
Roho was just a plain mutt. There is no need saying, “he was mix this, or mix that.” He was just a mutt.
He wandered up our driveway, starving and tired. We kept our distance at first. We weren’t sure if he was mean or aggressive.
But he walked right into the carport and jumped into Paw Paw’s wheelchair, right on top of his egg cart-like cushion seat. The brand name of the seat was Roho, and the name stuck.
Roho quickly became an inside dog. So much so that he forgot about his outdoor ways at times. He ate from under the table. He either slept with me or in the utility room. And he sometimes had to be dressed in baby clothes and carted around in a carriage.
But he always had a longing to run outside. We usually walked him on a leash or chained him in the yard, but that dog wanted out on his own.
Roho was constantly trying to sneak out. He would wait by the door, try to paw the screen door open. Maw Maw always caught him, and he would go back to the living room or kitchen.
Paw Paw was going out the back door one day in his wheelchair. And Roho made his move.
That dog went about 90 miles an hour under Paw Paw’s wheelchair and straight out the door.
“What’s happening,” Paw Paw asked,confused by the flash of light he saw come under his feet.
I pushed Paw Paw out of the way and made my way into the yard. All I saw was Roho’s back as he ran down Nobles Road.
“Maw Maw,” I screamed. “Roho is gone and never coming back.”
It was like a scene from a movie. I fell to my knees in the front yard, tears rolling down my cheeks, hands in the air. I think I may have yelled an agonizing, “Nooooo....”
Maw Maw came barreling out of the kitchen with Roho’s leash in hand. I had never seen Maw Maw move that fast before. Paw Paw said his hat was almost carried off by the wind.
I have to admit that Mother Nature assisted Maw Maw in her hunt for Roho. The poor dog stopped to relieve himself on the side of the road when Maw Maw came behind him like a creature from a horror movie.
Tossing the leash around like a lasso in a rodeo, she was able to catch Roho.
I was still on my knees when I saw Maw Maw bringing Roho behind her on his leash. I was so happy that I jumped up to greet them.
Roho was grounded for awhile after that. Apparently, Maw Maw was so embarrassed that the neighbors saw her running after a dog that she didn’t even speak to Roho for a week.
And Roho never tried to escape outside again. In fact, he wouldn’t even look at the door after that. He knew in that world beyond the screen door there was no instant food, no clean water, no soft beds.
Just grandmothers in cotton nightgowns and sponge hair rollers with elastic ropes that you can’t outrun even on a good day.