On the wisdom of dogs

Published 10:57 am Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Agatha Christie once said, “Dogs are wise. They crawl away into a quiet corner and lick their wounds and do not rejoin the world until they are whole once more.” After my family’s experience with Muffin, I tend to believe that is a true statement.

Muffin is a little Shih Tza mixed with Chihuahua. She usually does not want to be bothered with anyone other than Tierra, her owner/mom. Tierra was going out of town on vacation and asked her grandmother, dad and uncle to take care of her baby. While the humans were quick to agree, apparently no one asked Muffin if she was OK with these arrangements. She wasn’t.

Now Muffin had visited grandma’s home numerous times, but never without Tierra, her “mom.” Muffin apparently did not like being without her mom and became restless, constantly wandering around the house looking for the person who meant more to her than anyone or thing in the world.

One day someone left the front door opened and Muffin decided it was time to escape and look for her mom. My nephew realized she got out the house and called for her to come back inside. Instead she took off down the street at full speed ahead! The more he called, the farther she ran. Once or twice she looked back as if she were saying, “I’m going to find my mom. Don’t try and stop me!” He tried to go after her but Muffin was way too fast.

Muffin was gone for a few days and the family was in panic mode. It was extremely cold outside and it started to snow. She is such a tiny dog that everyone, even neighbors became concerned for her safety. She was spotted periodically, but no one could get close enough to grab and bring her home. Muffin was still on a mission, reuniting with her mom.

We all canvassed the neighborhood but soon came to the realization that Muffin was gone and quite possibly for good. We had no idea what happened to her, and as I said, she is a very tiny dog and it was cold with snow on the ground. The family was heartbroken and didn’t know how they were going to explain this to Tierra, so they didn’t.

Tierra called home frequently to check on her dog/baby. Each time she called, she was told Muffin was doing fine and to relax and enjoy her vacation. The family told her this because they didn’t want to ruin her vacation by telling her Muffin was missing. Her vacation would be over soon and then they would tell her the heartbreaking news: poor Muffin was currently lost but prayerfully not for good. The family prayed constantly, hoping for a miracle, hoping dear sweet Muffin would just come home. They knew it was a long shot, but God is in the miracle business, so they kept on praying.

The strangest thing happened two days before Tierra was scheduled to return. Muffin came back! She sashayed up to the front porch and looked at my nephew as if she was saying, “my mom will be here soon and I need to get cleaned up so I can be ready for her.” She acted as though she was gone for a few minutes versus a few days. The family was so happy to see Muffin that they cleaned her up, held her prisoner for two days so she couldn’t escape, and returned her to her mom as if nothing happened.

This lets us know that animals are equipped with a six sense. While Muffin was sad that her mom had left her, she also sensed that it was time for her mom to return and Muffin was going to make sure she was there when it happened.

Once again, “Dogs are wise. They crawl away into a quiet corner and lick their wounds and do not rejoin the world until they are whole once more.” Muffin is whole once more.

Mary Simmons is a columnist for The K-V Dispatch. She can be reached at ABoxofLoveKVD@gmail.com.