I like animals, but after my children grew up and left home – I was not been to keen on taking on the responsibility of a dog. Why not? It would have restricted my freedom, and would be very difficult to combine with work and travels. When I retired and moved here to Fuerteventura, my dog loving daughter warmly recommended a dog for company. I did not agree, as I enjoyed to be totally free to do impulsively what I wanted – when I wanted.
Loss of freedom
Of course I could be tempted by other peoples cute small dogs, and also the many rescue dogs that needed new homes. But thinking about the practical aspects always made me say no-no-no… Having to walk them a couple of times a day – even on dark and windy nights. Always having to get home in time – not leaving them alone for to long. Losing a bit of freedom, as you have to stay clear of places where dogs are not welcome. That means that you have to leave them at home when you go sightseeing, to the beaches or down-town… In other words, it was out of the question to get a four legged friend!! Never, ever…
But never say never….
One early spring morning 6 years ago I was enjoying my morning caffe latte, browsing thru the daily bad news, scandals, global tragedies and violent crimes… Then, the same procedure as every morning, I take a look at the happy-happy land of Facebook and friends (where we all present the best of ourselves and our lives). It is a nice contrast to the news anyway, and confirms that life is ok after all.
Tugging at my heart strings
But this particular morning would change my life! One of the animal rescue organisations had posted the most beautiful, lost little dog I had ever seen. A small golden furry face looked at me with a such a sad lonely look that it went straight to my heart. I had to resist the temptations, and I quickly closed Facebook! It did not help as the little face was printed in my heart.
Later on the same day I had to have another peak, and I had the same reaction. I closed Facebook and said no-no-no to myself. Still he was knocking on the doors of my heart… I waited a few days, but then I opened up a little bit – and phoned the rescue people to just meet the little guy. No strings attached.
They said ok, but warned me that he was so nervous and frightened that it was almost impossible to get contact with him. They did not even know if the could recommend him for adoption because of it. He had been living in the streets for nearly two years, and was used to running away to save himself. They jokingly called him Houdini and said he was an escape artist….
It did not I decided that I wanted to see him if he still was available for adoption. He was!! We made an appointment to meet at an outdoor restaurant in Corralejo, where the rescue guy lived – and the dog called Joey lived temporarily. When I came to the restaurant and sat down at their table, I did not try to touch or talk to Joey (as his name was). I was just trying to find out as much as possible about him and his sad little life. His owner, an Italian lady, who bought him as a puppy, had just gotten tired of the dog and left him alone in the street. For two years he had survived in the gardens of resorts… But he was terribly scared and could hardly be touched. It was obvious he did not trust anybody.
He chose me
After a while, Joey moved from his foster father, and sat on the floor next to me. I did not touch him or speak to him. But I said that I would like to pay for a medical check up, neutering etc., and when it was done I wanted to have him on a holiday first to see if it worked out. If so, I would adopt him. They phoned me when he was ready for his holiday…
We met at the same restaurant, and Joey came straight over to me, sat down close… The 3 of us went to the vet, where I bought everything a dog needs – he was willingly walking with me holding the lead. When we came to my car, I opened the door and lifted him onto the seat – he was shaking like a leaf but looked at me with thrusting eyes. He totally ignored his nice foster father (a good sign according to him).
Happily ever after
The holiday never came to an end, and Joey has become my companion and best little friend. I cannot imagine life without him!! He won me over!