I Never Knew Dogs Had Nine Lives
In the Great Scheme Of The Universe, which includes earthquakes in China and Italy, starvation in Somalia, genocide in Darfur, and chronic warfare on the seams of the Islamic world, saving the life of one dog is hardly worth noting.
Unless she's your dog.
This is her third save.
The first was finding her .
The second was when her leash caught in the elevator door and she bolted out on the third floor while the elevator progressed inexorably to the sixth floor. That time, the leash and her collar broke.
The third time was last night. Having previously experienced her tendancy to bolt in and out of the elevator, I've always held on to her collar when we're entering or exiting the elevator. The Husband neglected to do the same last night as he was bringing her back to the condo. He's got the flu, doesn't feel too hot himself, and frankly, the puppy is far more obedient to him than to me, so he wasn't expecting any problems.
They got on the elevator together. As the door started to close, something caught her attention and she bolted out the elevator door. The door closed despite The Husband's best effort to jam it open. The elevator again proceeded towards the top floor. He dropped the leash, hoping it would break and free the dog.
Had the leash been attached to her normal collar, that might have worked. Unfortunately, I bought a choke chain two weeks ago to try to curb her constant lunging at everything that interests her. Not that I mind her curiosity--I'm just tired of being knocked off my feet when 45 pounds of pure muscle decides to chase a blowing trash bag. I hate to admit it, but I'm starting to feel my age.
Choke chains don't break. They're made of tempered steel, or titanium, or something equally indestructive. The leash broke, but somehow her collar got stuck in the door as the leash pulled her, and the choke collar dragged her up along with the elevator.
The Husband had punched the next floor's button, got off and raced down the stairs in time to see our puppy being hoisted in the air by the elevator mechanism. The dog is screaming. I didn't know dogs could scream, either. He grabs her, punches the button to bring the elevator back to the entry floor, and then hoists the puppy up to his shoulder and holds her up so she isn't choking to death.
In the meantime, the neighbors have come out. One family is also a dog-lover and we've walked their puppy and ours together. The two pups are best friends who jump all over each other at every meeting.
The dog-lover husband runs inside to get some mechanical device to break the chain. I've run down to the entry floor because even from our apartment, over the television, I could hear our dog screaming. I get underneath her also in order to boost her up and free The Husband's hands, then tell both men to squeeze the device as hard as possible to break the chain.
They did it. The broke the chain. No chain collars ever again.
I wasn't too sure who was more petrified--the puppy or my husband. I had serious concerns about both of them collapsing. Dog-lover neighbors insisted we come into their condo, and gave everyone cookies (including the dogs) and gave us time to calm down.
It was the quietest night ever with this usually inexhaustible, overcharged bundle of canine companionship. She curled up on the couch and quivered. We even let her sleep on the bed that night, although she moved back to the couch after we fell asleep.
That's three saves. Three lives.
I'm praying we don't experience a fourth near-death event.