Santa’s Dirty Trick

On Christmas Eve morning my husband and I noticed two dogs, a Border Collie and a shepherd, hanging around the neighborhood. They spent the entire day in the field across the street looking expectantly at every passing car. By dusk, we decided it was time to make a concerted effort to coax them into the safety of our fenced yard.

They were leery of us but hunger overcame their caution; and they followed us through the gate. “Clang”, the gate banged shut behind them and they were in protective custody.

A little background: We have historically rescued cats. “Rescued” may be too strong a word. Let’s put it this way: they move in and we spay/neuter and feed them. Soon, despite our best resolutions, they have names and are hogging the bed. We have six at present and have had as many as nine. A disclaimer: this does not make me the crazy cat lady in my neighborhood as my friend two houses down the street has SEVENTEEN!


Mike has built a lovely cat run on the back of the house that allows the indoor cats to go outside at their leisure without facing the inherent dangers that cats face; but it also means that they can’t do gopher patrol in my garden. So, we compromise and let them go out in the daytime to earn their keep.

Back to the “dog rescue”: The first night, they had me up every twenty minutes to hush their barking. (My pet peeve is people who allow their dogs to bark incessantly) Directly after breakfast, Christmas morning, one of my fearless cats hopped over the fence to see what we were up to.

I should explain that we recently bought the house next door to ours, a small fixer upper, with the intention of renovating it and using it as a guest house for relatives. It is there we are housing the canine guests.

When the cat showed them how easy it was to leap the four-foot fence, they became a menace to my cats; so…we moved them into the house. A week later we still had had no response to our numerous ads seeking their staff. So…


Mike built a large dog run next to the house and we have taken to walking them two to five miles a day. And worst of all, we’ve named them. Looks like we have dogs


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