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Casey, Paulie & Pixie

Story ID:1761
Written by:Suzana Margaret Megles (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Story
Location:Lakewood Ohio USA
Year:2007
Person:Suzana
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Casey, Paulie & Pixie

Casey, Paulie & Pixie

Casey, Paulie & Pixie

I felt that after having to put down my dear Patti - my sixth dog over the past 30 years, I just had no more stomach for getting another dog to love and then to lose. Patti's 10-12 year sojourn on this earth with us ended sadly. She developed Degenerative Myelopathy which destroyed her back legs and all too soon her front legs went as well.

A few years earlier she had been hit by a car when I dropped her leash momentarily to fix Shana's. In a split second she had bounded across the street after a squirrel and into the path of a car. I heard a loud boom and looked unbelievingly into the street whence it came. I was sure she was dead, but miraculously she
hobbled out from beneath the front of the car. Then to save her smashed hock was a miracle story in itself too, but one I have already described in Our Echo as well as my futile attempt to give her mobility with wheels.

Now on this cold January day of 2005 the lady across the street who had a 6-year old Samoyed-mix asked me if I would look for a home for Casey. I told her that I would try but would probably have to take care of her myself because I find it difficult to find good homes for animals needing them. However, I assured her that I would take her if no one else did. And it turned out to be a blessing that no one else did. Casey would prove problematic in quite a few areas and I'm glad no one else would have to tackle them except myself.

She told me that Casey, like many Samoyeds, didn't like cats. Wow. That would be a
problem. Paulie and Pixie (cats) lived with me on the first floor and Pearl, Princess, and Gracie - cats too- lived in my partially renovated basement. However, I looked at
Casey who was not well taken care of - her mostly white coat disheveled with strips of hair hanging here and there and I knew she needed help. I also knew that she had not ever seen a vet or a groomer. She would need shots and spaying.

I hoped that a relative would take her after I did the needed grooming and spaying but in the meantime, Casey would have to live in my hallway and the part of the basement which was cat-free.

One day she accidentally got past me and bounded into the house and chased after Paulie and grabbed him in her mouth. I went ballistic running to Paulie's rescue hitting on Casey to release him. She did, and thankfully, she had not penetrated his skin. But she sure managed to scare the life out of both Paulie and me. Now it seemed there would be little chance of my letting Casey come and live with us after this frightening incidence.

Then Casey also proved difficult to feed. She obviously got more than her share of table scraps and treats from her first owner because my kibble and canned meat mixture did not interest her at all. However, she would get nothing else until she ate what I placed before her. She still is very picky but usually manages to eat the small amount of dog food I give her. When she does, she gets some of my vegan fare as well as her favorite treats. I also believe her teeth have not properly developed because she can't seem to polish off a large milk bone for her size.

I noticed too that Casey often left a trail of blood on the steps. It wasn't until I got her
spayed that I learned she had a bleeding cyst. So, I was glad that she finally was getting
the vet help she needed. And oh yes, one of the first things I did at Sorin's (a friend) suggestion was to take Casey to his groomer. After cutting away her tangles and over-
grown hair, Casey emerged one pretty dog with a lovely magenta bow which said - Take a look at me now!

Then walking Casey is almost impossible. She is a strong dog and pulls to take me where she wants to go. Yes, she probably needs dog obedience training, but at 76 and never having had to do this with any of my other dogs, I don't have the inclination to take her (or the stamina). She is just going to have to learn how to walk properly or not be given walks until she does. I even got her a gentle lead which she immediately knocks off the bridge of her nose when I put it on. They say that the dogs who do this are the ones who need the lead the most. I will try again with warm weather, but now our mixed up winter (February in January and January in February) has given us a lot of snow which covers a lot of unshoveled side walks making it impossible for me to walk on them- let alone be pulled by Casey. If I fall and break a bone, I won't be any good for anyone including Casey and my 5 cats.

Finally after a year and a half, I tried bringing in Casey upstairs and happily Paulie has learned to make his peace with her gradually but initially always in my presence. Now he can bravely walk in front of Casey and I sometimes see them trading facial sniffs without incidence. Success at last.

But Pixie is a whole nother ball game. She is a fat pint-sized feral who has a mind of her own and that does not include co-existing peacefully with Casey. Everytime Casey came anyway near her she hissed and picked up her small paw waving it menacingly at him. And to Casey's credit, she has learned her lesson and
will not harm her in anyway and stays put or backs away. Casey is now very wary of Pixie and rightly so. I would be too!

I laughed one time when I called Casey for a trip to the back yard and she wasn't
responding to my call. Upon investigating, I couldn't help but laugh when I saw this little cat waving her paw at a large Samoyed-mix and managing to keep her at bay. The picture was precious - there was an obstacle in Casey's way and that obstacle was this pint- sized Pixie who would not let Casey through. Though initially I was angry at Pixie because I had to come and see what was keeping Casey, I chuckled as I had to
admit - this episode was one for the books. I've had to come to Casey's "rescue" a number of times since, but I finally believe that I got through to Pixie that this type of "maneuver-
ing" was verboten. I had other things to do beside clear the way for Casey and that big "ferocious" dog needed to go to the bathroom.

So Casey has mellowed considerably re the cats and now enjoys the "luxury" of co-existing with us on the first floor. The two remaining problems -her bad eating habits and the walking problem need to be addressed more fully. Of all the dogs I've had, Casey has caused me the most grief, but then it probably isn't all her fault. Her early start in life was certainly not the best. I hope the rest of her life will be better for Casey - a whole lot better, please God.

*Pictures - Casey, Paulie, and Pixie -the "terror"