One For the Book

As I continue to collect amazing stories about dogs showing their smarts, I’d like to share the occasional one with you.  I’ve selected this story because it speaks volumes on so many levels.  See if you agree.

~This story came to me from Margo Seamus in Washington

The Ground Beneath Her Feet

I have two Keeshonds: Apollo, who I got when he was a puppy, and Keesha, who came to us from Rescue when she was a bit older. While Apollo was a very agile and easygoing dog, Keesha arrived with a number of issues, one of which included feeling nervous on linoleum floors, as well as any other surfaces that she didn’t feel confident about being on.

One morning when I was putting clean clothes away in the closet, Apollo had jumped on the bed. Keesha, liking to be both near me and Apollo, whom she adored, jumped on the bed as well. I should mention at this point that I had a waterbed.

Since she’d never been on the bed before, she didn’t realize what kind of surface it was.  As the mattress began undulating under her feet, she became petrified. Not knowing what else to do, she froze and looked to Apollo for help.

As Apollo did not have any issues with stability, he could easily jump on and off the unsteady bed surface with no trouble. But when he realized that Keesha was terrified, paralyzed in place, he did the most amazing thing I think I’ve ever seen a dog do.

He looked at her, and instead of jumping off the bed, he walked to the large cedar chest at the food of the bed (which was at the same height as the bed), looked again at Keesha, and then stepped onto it before jumping off to the floor.

Poor thing, Keesha was still on the water bed, scared out of her wits and not moving a muscle. Apollo saw this, jumped back on the bed, looked at Keesha again, almost as if to encourage her and teach her. Then he walked from the bed to the cedar chest again, looked back at Keesha, and then jumped back off the bed.  He did this one more time because she still hadn’t moved.  (Meanwhile, I just stood watching this whole thing with great fascination and extreme love for Apollo).

Once more, he looked at Keesha as he stood next to her on the bed, walked to the cedar chest, looked at her again and just waited there.  She slowly walked to him, and followed him onto the cedar chest.

Realizing that she was back on stable ground, she stood there for a minute to collect herself. Then Apollo jumped off and looked back at her.  She jumped off the bed after him, and was finally back where she knew she was safe on the carpeted bedroom floor. Her relief was palpable.

I have to say this is one of the most remarkable things I’ve ever seen any of my dogs do. Apollo was truly an amazing dog and an incredible companion.  There are other stories about him, but I think this one really beats them all and also speaks volumes about how animals communicate with each other.

6 thoughts on “One For the Book”

  1. Dogs are amazing. Growing up we had a dog who parented my youngest brother. We had a similar scene when my brother wandered off as a toddler and the dog tried to get him to follow him home. I watched it from the top of a hill. My dog today has similar tendencies. He got upset and barked at me when I locked the cat in the kitchen because she was after the chicken soup I was eating. I relented and let her in again, he herded her to a corner of the room, placed his paw on her and gave her a commanding look for quite a few moments. She left me and my soup alone after that. He has also trained her not to lay in any of his baskets. As the cat’s basket is his old puppy basket, I have had to put it upstairs where he cannot go, so that she can use it.

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  2. I really enjoyed this story. And I tagged you for the “Around the World (or the Mom-Blog-o-sphere part of it) in 80 Clicks” meme. And I’m sorry I never did the Honest Scrap one, although I meant to and had very good intentions.

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    • edj, thanks for the tag. And no worries for the Honest Scrap — sometimes we have time and energy to do memes and sometimes we don’t. C’est la vie. : )

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  3. Are not dogs among the most wonderful of God’s creations? The most amazing things like this happen when we least expect it, and fortunate are those who are present enough to see it and marvel. Keesha and her owner are blest to have a chivalrous companion such as Apollo. Now, if some of my women friends could be so lucky……..:-)

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