“And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good” Genesis 1:25
“Charming.” That should have told us something about him right away. He was wearing the dog adoption vest around farmer’s market one Saturday in July as my family and I were picking up breakfast and vegetables. The size of Bassett hound with everything else of a beagle, he was certainly easy to fall in love with, which my kids did right away. Laid back, easy going and oh so cute. “Charming”, definitely fit his description. When we visited him at the dog shelter he came out into the yard, sniffed around the fence, yawned and sat down right at my feet (they had to have drugged him). He had me even before he moaned when I rubbed his ears. We signed on the dotted line and then waited out the mandatory time, for processing.
Tuesday afternoon, the shelter called that he was ready for pick-up. With my husband at work and the kids at summer camp, I went by myself. I placed towels over the seat, not having a pet carrier yet to get, “Sherlock”, as we renamed him. They brought him out with a cone around his head to keep him from licking his stiches from his mandatory operation. He was a hyper. I honestly thought, “Well, I’d be antsy with a cone around my head too.” I put him in the car to leave and then things went a little crazy. A coned dog, outside of a pet carrier inside a Yaris is lethal combination. Realizing there wasn’t room for the dog, movement, and the cone of shame, I made my first mistake. I removed the cone. With the window down, the dog jumped out the window at the shelter where I chased him for ten minutes before figuring out how to get him back in the car. Rolling up the window, most of the way, I headed home taking the fastest route I knew – the interstate. Driving 70 miles per hour up the interstate the dog stuck his head out the window and then slipped getting wedged as he slid down between pane and the tighter portion of the window opening. Yelping for dear life, there was Sherlock hanging by his neck with his head out of my Yaris. Pulling over quickly by cutting in front of a big rig was probably not the best driving decision I ever made. Sherlock licked my face relieved to be free from the window, after getting him loose, as I held him tightly and rubbed his ears. Our near death experience began our bond. My sweet but wild dog had a home and I knew right away that this game was truly afoot as the beginning of many adventures.
After a week with Sherlock, the escape artist, my husband and I welcomed home the kids to our new pet. We laughed the whole summer thinking about how the shelter naming him “Charming”. We now know why. It wasn’t because he was so cute, it had to have been because “charm is deceitful…” (Proverbs 31:30) My husband began to address the dog as “the villain” for his daily antics. Testing the fence line for weak boards, eating the rose bushes, breaking a hole in the swimming pool were just a few. It turned out to be quite a lively summer.
Then school started and it was just me and Sherlock through the days. Walks and backyard talks while he enjoyed long ear rubs, became the highlight of my days. During this time I was working through health issues and this rascal of a Basgle (we made up our own breed, Bassett/Beagle mix), kept me company, never leaving me alone. He helped me smile from his mischievous nature. With each fence break he had managed to meet most of our neighbors; in fact, we began to keep a bowl of water and a chain in the front yard. People would just chain him up as they found him. To this day on our walks, people always ask how Sherlock is doing. (I sometimes wonder if they even know our name other than, Sherlock’s family.)
A couple of Halloweens ago, my daughter decided she would trick or treat as Sleeping Beauty. Dressed in her pick ballet costume and tiara, she headed out the door with Sherlock dressed as Prince Charming. Before they reached the first house his crown had seen its destruction. Our family smiled because our Basgle of a prince had charmed his way into our hearts.