My Best Friend: Aristophanes

My dog is amazing.  right now, he’s trying to gnaw at my left hand and whatever else is on it while i restrain him by his collar.  thus my typing skills are compromised right now.  eventually he will calm dow and then I will have the use of both hands, like here. But now, while I know he will be calm as long as I don’t move, I am always concerned when I disturb this setting by rattling it by getting up, for example!  Then he is wide awake and ready to go.  But at least I’ll be able to finish this piece on such a stunning and intelligent dog.

When I first saw him, he was matted everywhere, had sprigs in his coat, and was sprayed blue (antiseptic) on most of his body.   His left ear had been ripped, and required stitches and a special collar for 8 days to prevent him from scratching it.  When I took him to the vet the first thing he did was shave his entire body, which made his wounds visible.  And neuter him.  He had bite marks everywhere.  On his legs.  On his head.  On his belly.  And on his back.  He was highly and extremely withdrawn.  Very quiet.  So much so that Zeffie wondered if he were deaf because he never made a sound.

Over time he recovered from this trauma where he was mauled by a pack of dogs he lived with.  Aristophanes had been abandoned by the mountains on the outskirts of Athens, an area where abandoned dogs were frequently cared for by groups of people who felt bad when these ugly human acts took place.  They were fed and given emergency vet care when necessary, but were limited in their resources.  I took Aristophanes because the first vet he saw really did very little to tend to his wounds.  He put on band-aids essentially.  And since none of the persons could take him home for various reasons they had planned to release him into the woods again, with the same pack of dogs!  (He is sleeping now.  His butt is leaning against my computer.) And I said, they’ll kill him if you do that.  I thought it was idiotic thinking on their part.  Take him to the vet.  Then put him back into a high risk environment.  That’s like killing him.  He’ll be dead!  So I began only with the idea of fostering him, but it didn’t take long before I realized I had fallen in love with him.  First of all, his appearance is stunning.  He is beautiful.  And his temperament is that of a puppy, which is probably why he likes to gnaw so much.  Hopefully, that nasty habit will fade with time.  And even though I knew I would be walking into a hellish situation, I knew that for him, moving here would be heaven.  What with its big yard.

And it has been.

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