My elderly neighbor Roy passed away last year. He was an incredibly sweet man but his biggest pet peeve in the WORLD was a barking dog. I think he even called the cops on one barky neighbor multiple times. (Oh yeah, and he also called squirrels “rats with fancy tails” which I totally disagreed with.)
That’s why it was so funny to me when his grandchildren moved into his vacated home and brought their own barky dog. My husband and I would listen to it bark at all hours & roll our eyes because we knew Roy would be pitching a FIT.
That lasted until the day I laid eyes on this dog, which was about the cutest thing I’d ever seen. He was some sort of blonde schnauzer-mix with one ear that refused to stay up. His face said, “Hey girl, wanna come over here and let me drool on your hand? Because I’d like that.”
My kids discovered him too and started running outside to play with him anytime his owners let him into the backyard. They would run up & down the side of the fence with him & throw in rocks and sticks that he would joyfully gobble up.
We met our new neighbors soon after and found out the little dog’s name was Caesar. Not the name I would’ve chose for this precious lump of fur (he should be something friendly like Champ or Chester) but whatever. That’s when our relationship took a slight turn.
Caesar and I started spending more time together and discussing how his owners didn’t LOVE him the way I did. I noticed that they would leave him in the backyard for what felt like ages. There was even a massive hole in their gate that he would escape through and run amok through the streets. My children chased him into our own house multiple times because he was running loose. Then there was the night Caesar was out and a storm rolled in. He was TERRIFIED of thunder and barked at me through the window to DO SOMETHING.
I pounded on the neighbors’ front door in my nightgown and had a cordial conversation with him about Caesar, but the underlying discussion was much different:
“Hey, Caesar is still out and there’s a storm rolling in. Thought you might want to take him in.”
(You just told me how scared he is of storms. Way to roll, jerk.)
“Oh wow, thank you! I didn’t realize there was a storm coming in.”
(WHAT storm, you hysteric? Why don’t you calm down and get your OWN freaking dog?)
(He should be MINE!)
A moving truck pulled up to their house Friday night, in the dark, which seemed very suspicious to me. Now I know why.
Caesar is gone. They moved out in the dead of night and they took our precious dog with them. They didn’t even take the multiple toys that we purchased & threw over the fence to him. The heartbreak I feel is immeasurable, possibly even worse then my kids who stand next to that empty backyard now and sigh.
Caesar is gone. A love that was meant to be is over before it even had a chance to start. But I’ll never forget you Caesar. I’ll never forget your sweet face or stubborn ear or the way you would bark directly at our kitchen window when you were lonely. I will miss you little friend…but I’m also kind of hoping our NEXT neighbors will have a Shih Tzu.