Friday, November 16, 2012
I had just settled into a chair in the warm sunlight in the living room to tune my sister's mandolin when I realized, "Oops! I'm sitting in Ginger's chair!" As a matter of fact, there's hardly ever a time when our family gathers in the living room (usually for Bible reading) that Ginger doesn't sit in her chair and I sit on the floor. It doesn't bother me at all. I think the floor is comfortable; the dog simply disagrees.
We got Ginger as a 3 month old puppy in the spring of 2003. It wasn't long before she had the run of the neighborhood. Pretty soon, she brought home a shoe. "Just 1 shoe, Ginger?" we teased her. "You should have brought home a pair." Well, soon enough we had plenty of shoes! Finally, one day we saw our neighbor Dennis. "Dennis, do you happen to be missing any shoes?" we asked. "Well, as a matter of fact I am missing a few..."
Next, Ginger took to stealing farmers' (my dad's customers') gloves; once she even jumped into the cab of a pick-up truck to steal a glove. Of course, wild chases ensued, giving Ginger all the fun and attention she craved. Customers soon learned to keep their truck doors shut.
When winter came, we started finding a wing here, a drumstick there, and half-eaten chickens everywhere! How did Ginger develop such an appetite for chicken, and where did she find so many? She definitely couldn't have been paying secret visits to Kentucky Fried Chicken, could she? So, we put an ad in the local newspaper: "Found: Red Chickens." It wasn't long before we got a call from our long-suffering neighbor Dennis. "Hi, I saw your ad in the newspaper, and I was just wondering...are any of those chickens still alive?"
It turned out that he had seen the chicken massacre as he drove home from work one day. Of course, we paid him for the damages, and set about growing our own flock of chickens.
We finally got Ginger "chicken-trained" (and yes, there were a few casualties during the training). Then for the next 6 years we trained every stray or neighbor dog (at least 6 dogs in all) that came to visit.
I guess you reap what you sow...and then some.
After her exploits as a puppy, Ginger had to put up with all of the young neighbor puppies.
Here Ginger tries to keep a puppy in line (2009 or 2010):
For the past couple years, Ginger has settled into a rather placid life. Our neighbor has promised that if he ever gets another dog it will have short legs and not come over to live at our house.
Ginger has been "converted" since her wild days of youth. She's now peace-loving, treats the cats well, would never dream of touching a chicken, and spends most of her days lying on the couch or her favorite chair.
Who could ask for a nicer dog (with a more exciting life-story)--even if she does hog the living room chairs?