Barking my head off, I dug in my paws and resisted as Diana dragged me into the house and slammed the front door.
No, Sasha. You’ve barked at enough invisible dangers today.
What! Who is she kidding? Invisible? Not this time. Danger locked eyes with me and made itself known only 20 feet away from my very own front door.
I rushed through the after walk nightly cookie ritual and returned to patrol the front door, sniffing all around the frame. Diana turned out the lights and headed up to do work on her yarn projects in the Girl Room. I watched her go but remained downstairs.
He was out there, getting closer every minute. I could feel his presence and smell his desperation. Pushing up against the cold metal front door, I gusted air through my nose to clear my senses then listened silently for him. His heavy paw pads warily mounted the front steps. I didn’t dare growl or whine, keeping myself as still as possible. Even so, he knew I was there – waiting for him to approach.
Little Red, I know you are there. I need you. I need you to help me. I’ve been watching you, biding my time. You are the only one who can save me.
My legs trembled but I held my ground. I’m half Chihuahua after all. Rushing headlong into a fight is what I do. I wouldn’t say I was fearless but I refused to back away and hide. I whispered to him.
Go away. Go far away from here as fast as you can. I’ve heard the humans. They called the wildlife removal service. They are determined to find you.
I pleaded with him to run away and save himself but he would not listen to a word I said.
You are stronger and smarter than you know, Little Red. Find a way. Use your humans. You can get them to do anything you want. If they find me, they will kill me. You are my only hope to stay alive.
Did I really have the skills to save him? Yes, I know I did I believed in myself. I might have spent my puppy years in loneliness and isolation, but wasn’t that dog anymore. I was rescued in my darkest hours and have an amazing life now. It is my turn to rescue another and help him have the life he was born to live and deserves.
Where do you come from? I’ve never seen you before this summer. Even though you hurt my friend I don’t want to keep calling you “The Bad Guy.” What is your name?
Before he could answer my questions, a car slowly drove down the street. Its brilliant headlights lit the way, announcing its arrival. I heard him push back into the safety provided by the dark shadows of the porch. Once the car passed, he sighed heavily and spoke.
There are none of my kind left in this part of the world. No members of my Coyote family have called me by my pup given name in so long I’ve forgotten what it is. I call myself Tristan. It means ‘Full of Sorrows’ in Latin.
I also had known desperate and lonely times when humans were not my friends. His loneliness hit me full on.
Give me a few days, Tristan. I will turn the humans to our side. Diana is mush in my paws. I will work her somehow. Can you stay hidden for a bit longer?
I knew the key to saving him was Diana. If I got her working with us – even if she didn’t know she was – I could find a way to save Tristan’s life. He begged me, his once proud voice empty and hollow.
I am hungry, Little Red. I’ve not had a meal in many, many days. Will you find me food?
I knew just how to get him something to eat. My plan involved grilled hamburgers, getting under foot and something called the “Five Second Rule.”
Tomorrow after dark go to the back fence where the garbage cans are. Get into the big blue can. I will make sure there is food in it for you.
Knowing he had no options left, Tristan agreed to my plan.
I will do as you say, Little Red. I know you don’t trust me and I understand why you don’t. I feel the same about humans.
He sounded so alone. The sadness and fear in his voice hurt me desperately.
Tristan, to be honest, I am afraid of you. But, I would like you to call me by my pup given name. I am Sasha.
He turned and started down the steps, returning to the safety he could find of the tall grass and trees. Looking back at the door, he spoke to me one last time.
All I want is to live. Is that too much to ask of the world? Please tell your golden eyed friend I’m very sorry I hurt her. Thank you for helping me, Sasha.
All this thinking and planning made me thirsty. I trotted away from the door and made my way in to the darkened kitchen. I took a long drink from my bowl then headed upstairs to hang out with Diana.
I found Diana busy sorting yarn balls and designing her next project. She didn’t notice that the late night local news had come on the small TV on her desk. I settled onto my blanket on the bed and distractedly watched the TV flicker.
The news announcer said after the commercial break, the next story would explain why people were encountering more wild animals as housing developments moved further east into the Cascade mountains. The perfect opportunity to change Diana’s mind about wildlife removal service and to have Tristan relocated instead of killed just landed on my lap.
I looked over at Diana. Still absorbed in her yarn project, she hadn’t heard the newsman’s story lead in. I had to get her to listen to the story. If I started barking she wouldn’t even look up so I had to try something new, something that would grab her attention away from her project.
I pretended to have a sneezing fit, and of course, it worked perfectly. Diana looked up to see what was wrong with me. I bobbed my head up and down towards the TV. She turned to watch just as the story was coming on.
Tonight our Reporter in the Field brings us an update on the rash of Coyote sightings east of Seattle. He has shocking news just in about the wildlife removal service most communities are using.
I had done it! I just knew something in this story would change Diana’s mind about the wildlife removal service. I slowly wagged my tail back and forth on the blanket as relief and feelings of accomplishment surged through me.
Diana dropped her yarn project and sat next to me on the bed to watch the story. The reporter droned on and on about how many people were moving here to find work and how they needed new homes to live in. Unfortunately, the wildlife in the area was getting pushed further out into the foothills. Unable to cope, the terrified animals tried to survive as best they could where they had always lived. Unfortunately, contact with humans usually ended badly for the displaced animals.
I put my paw on Diana’s leg, gave her best award-winning sad eyes and gently scratched her leg, working all the sympathy angles I could find. She reached down and petted me softly behind the ears as we listened to the story.
She gasped when the reporter said shocking new information revealed that the wildlife removal service humans had been using was breaking the law. They were killing the animals they captured instead of relocating them further into the mountains as they should.
Oh, Sasha, this is terrible. I called that service to capture what hurt Duchess. I had no idea they would just kill the poor beast. I can’t let them kill it when all it’s trying to do is survive.
Bingo. I had her. Tristan was safe.
Based on what you learned in today’s post, the Pals want you leave us a message with your answers to the following questions
- Imagine how Sasha feels knowing she overcame her fears to help a dangerous stranger.
- Tell us how you think Sasha, Ryan and Oliver are going to get the BBQ hamburgers into the garbage so Tristan can finally eat.
Leave us your thoughts and answers to these questions in the comment section below. We promise to read every single comment and will even answer some.
Paw & Wing & Tread Hugs
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