Saturday, June 21, 2014

The Case of the Stolen Guinness…

The other day, my Facebook and Flickr friend Lydia Martin of BlueFox Photography stuck a post on Facebook that made me think of our Greyhound Tigger.
Tigger was our dog when the kids were still pretty young.  He died in 2008.  We adopted him off the track through a wonderful Greyhound rescue organization Greyhound Options.  It didn’t take him very long to realize that he had at long last hit the jackpot and he settled in fairly quickly and easily.  We bought him a big bed and he spent most of his time on it curled up on it in the middle of the living room in front of the fireplace.

I remember one night when I had had a busy day.  The kids were finally in bed and Greg was out of town. I was ready to have a little time to myself and to watch some television.  I just wanted to relax.  I went and looked in the refrigerator and there standing on the shelf was one can of Guinness.  It shone like a beacon to my weary soul.  I took it out, opened it and poured it slowly into a beer mug.  Because I like my dark beers pretty close to room temperature, I took it into the living room and put it on the coffee table to allow it to warm up a little and turned on the TV.
Then the phone rang.
Those were the days before caller ID when I felt that I had to actually answer the phone every time it rang, so up I got and back into the kitchen I went.  I don’t remember who was calling.  I imagine it was Greg telling me he got to his final destination safely, but I wouldn’t swear to it.  The call only took a few minutes.  When I returned to the living room, Tigger was sleeping on his bed, the TV as on, the cats were in their usual places and my mug of Guinness was empty.
Tigger never admitted to drinking my Guinness but I know that cats didn’t do it.  I mean they were cats after all and only 30 year old Scotch whiskey or the best Champagne would do for them, I’m sure, if they bothered to indulge.  It had to be the dog.  He didn’t seem to suffer any ill-effects from his indulgence and I couldn’t stay mad at him for more than a couple of seconds.  I went back to the kitchen with my empty mug and brought back some ice water.  Just watching my relaxed dog helped me relax and we all had a nice evening.

Tigger was a great pet.   We never regretted our decision to make him a part of our family.  I think that some people have misconceptions about what it would be like to live with a Greyhound.  Here are some things that we learned about Greys after our boy came to live with us.
Greyhounds are just big couch potatoes.  Sure they love a good walk, but they don’t need a lot of vigorous exercise.  While there may be exceptions to the rule, a Greyhound is a mellow, gentle dog.
You can have Greyhounds around small pets.  Not all of them are good around small pets though.  After all, they spent their days on the track being taught to chase small animals.  But most of the Greyhound adoption agencies try to figure out if the individual dog is cat and small dog safe.  When Tigger came to live with us, we had two cats.  As it turned out, our cat Asta fell in love at first sight and the two were the best of friends throughout Tigger’s life with us.

A lot of Greyhounds love to sing.  When Tigger came to live with us, we thought it would be fun to teach him how to sing Take Me out to the Ballgame.  He took to it quite enthusiastically.  Then we decided that maybe we didn’t want a singing Greyhound and quit encouraging him.  In reality, Greyhounds are very quiet dogs.  But being hounds, they do howl now and then.  When Tigger was a young dog, every time I would get home from somewhere I could hear him singing in the house before I opened the door.  I don’t think he was singing Take Me out to the Ballgame, I’m pretty sure he was singing, “I love you, Barb, and I’m so glad you’re home.”
If you have room on your floor and room in your heart and are on the look-out for a dog, consider finding a Greyhound adoption agency in your neck of the woods.  Greyhounds make GREYT pets!

P.S.  My daughter Carrie and I are embarking on a road trip next week so I’m not sure when I’ll see you again.  Happy Summer Solstice to You All!


TexWisGirl said...

i knew a couple that each had their own businesses. they'd take turns taking the greyhound to work with them to their businesses. very mellow dog, they had.

kat from ky. said...

I loved this story and I kind of have a crush on Tigger now too! You all were very lucky to have each other in that point and time. You are very good people my friend.

The Furry Gnome said...

We had a'Tigger' dog too for a long time.

Sandra said...

thank you so much for sharing this heartwarming story.. made my heart sing with happiness.. that last photo is just so beautiful... and the one with the cat really tugged at the old heart strings. we have not one but 3 grayhound rescue here, because of all the dog racing in FL... they are wonderful pets...

Pamela Gordon said...

Aw, I loved this story about your sweet Tigger. What a great dog and pet. I love when I read about adopted dogs and how much love and joy they bring to a family. I hope you and your daughter have a wonderful little trip. Blessings, Pam

Lydia Martin said...

Love this post well written and I could almost reach out and touch your Tigger!

Did you know that horses will sometimes receive a mash with beer? Although I think this prob done more in jolly old england then here.

Lovely photos and I esp like the last one with the deep contrasts

Thanks for the link to my site as well and have a wonderful trip with your daughter!

Lydia Martin said...

oh know I meant to write to Barb and not barn...and I can't even blame auto correct for this one....sigh

Debbie said...

oohhhh great images of tigger!!

and a road trip, i am pretty darn excited!!!

Tina Fariss Barbour said...

I love this story! Tigger looks like he was a sweetheart. I'm sure he was a lucky dog to have you and your family.

Our cat Chase Bird thinks he has to eat and drink everything we do. Sometimes that becomes problematic because there are some things cats just cannot eat. :-)

magda said...

Πολύ τρυφερή ανάμνηση αγαπητή μου φίλη!
Από τις υπέροχες φωτογραφίες σου, τον αγάπησα κι εγώ!
Είναι θαυμάσια η σχέση με ένα σκυλί,καταλαβαίνεις την αληθινή αγάπη!
Σου εύχομαι καλές διακοπές με την κόρη σου!
Πολλά φιλιά

Nicki said...

Such a dear story and great testament for pet adoption. Enjoy your travels.

Gail Dixon said...

A beautiful post. Our local news just ran a segment on 15 available greys. They do look like super sweet dogs. I enjoyed the story of Tigger drinking your Guinness. :)

Linda said...

Oh...I needed that heartwarming story, Barb♥️
Enjoy your trip....happy summer to you!
Linda :o)

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Rose said...

I loved reading this...the part about the Guinness reminds me of our last dog.

One night my older daughter and I were sitting here...end table between our chairs. She had went and got cookies and milk and laid the cookies on a napkin on the table...she was taking one at a time and dunking it in the milk.

Shortly she said, "MOM, did Shelby(our dog) just lick my cookies?" I said "I don't know, pretend to not pay attention but watch" we did.

Shelby looked at her and looked at me...just imagine it...her eyebrows moved more than any dog I ever along with her eyes moving her eyebrows raise too...she looks at me, looks at Rachel, and sneakily licks one...

We didn't say anything...she looks again, just kind of watches us and gently reaches over and takes one! We about died laughing.

She was probably the smartest dog I ever could not even spell the word walk around her...I think she picked up on the sound of just saying the letter 'k'...or else the sound of our voice, though we really did try to talk in a normal voice.

And she tried as hard as she could to say 'I Love You' and you could almost tell she was saying it.

And the look in Tigger's face is the look she had...