She got out yesterday afternoon. I forgot I had left the deck door open, to help dry the primer in the kitchen. Through the sliding glass door I glimpsed a pale gray arc streaking over the chain link fence and I knew, too late, she was gone.
It’s hard to begrudge her when she escapes. She lives to run, and up at the lake, where I can set her free to roam in the woods, she is in dog heaven. At home in the suburbs, though, there are laws against that sort of thing. Every time she gets out, I worry that she’ll get hit by a car, or pester a neighbor, or, worse, happen upon another unsuspecting poodle. I have bailed her out of dog jail twice, and have resolved loudly on many occasions to give her away to someone who has a farm where she can run and run and run and run. It’s the humane thing to do. But I don't. Because I adore her.
She tears in and out between the houses, under hedges and over fences, a flashing, fluid torment to the neighborhood wildlife which, truth be told, is really getting out of hand anyway. She doesn't usually go far, and she runs out of steam before too long. After a while, if I'm lucky, I'll hold open the door for her and she'll trot cheerfully back inside, proudly sporting her latest fragrance, "eau de rotting carcass."
She goes directly to her bowl for a long, sloppy drink before collapsing onto the kitchen floor, thumping her tail on the linoleum and grinning gratefully.