escape artist: Helen's story ................. 0 8 / 1 9 / 2 0 0 1

My wife, Helen, submitted the following on the subject of Hannah, the escape artist. As this is a vanity page, you're not allowed to gripe about redundancy. Editing is lightly done and all my fault; otherwise, it appears as originally published on the Merwolfpack mailing list.

Hannah, our female German Shepherd/Husky mix, has been a VERY BAD DOG lately, tearing up three sets of mini blinds and one window shade (bought to replace the mini-blinds). She's scratched large divits in two interior doors, and scratched the kitchen table up.

She got out a week and a half ago. She was in the bay window in the kitchen (when we leave the house she gets up on the kitchen chairs if we don't push them in, and gets in the window) and we'd left the window open to let some breeze in. She pushed the screen out and jumped out, right into my rose bushes. (Which didn't slow her down one bit, I'd bet.) I don't know how long she was wandering the neighborhood, but she had time to snarl at a neighbor who tried to catch her, then come home hot and thirsty. When I drove up she ran right toward me, then turned and ran to the front door. (That was a first. Normally I'd be eligible for the NFL after the tackles I have to make to catch her.)

So ever since then she's been trying her darndest to get out. We got a baby gate for the bay window. She learned to open it. I secured it to the sides of the window, and put velcro on the lock. She bent the wire out of the inside and got through. (I've now used velcro cable straps to hold the darn wire in, and have turned the whole thing upsidedown and backwards. I think that'll hold her for almost a week.

Yesterday I came home from my in-laws house, where my mother in law, who has a sewing machine and knows how to use it, was helping me make curtains (yes, to replace the mini-blinds and shade Hannah tore up.) to have my neighbor walk up to me and ask if I put Hannah in his back yard.

Uh, no. I didn't.

Durn dog has climbed the fence before, you know. [And Dennis's tree. One thing we've learned is that she's versatile -- R.]

I went and got the leash (Foley, our sweet, loving, never-stray-from-home male dog was extremely relieved to see me. He worries like heck when Hannah gets out, I've learned.) and retrieved the miscreant. I then led her around the house, and, with the help of a flashlight, the entire back yard fence (I hate walking into outdoor spider webs.) looking for how she got out. I finally decided she'd climbed the fence based on some circumstantial evidence I found near the fence seperating our two yards. Then, and only then, did I feel secure letting her off the leash. She seemed quite proud of herself, and content, and hung out in the back yard until we went to bed around midnight. I know this, 'cause I would check on her every so often, using my flashlight to locate her shiny green eyes staring happily back at me from our destroyed planter.

This morning Foley woke us up with worried whimpers. Hannah was in the neighbor's back yard.

By the way, and it's not at all a tangent, did you know that Home Depot is open at 6:30 in the morning?

I spent the morning with my father in law, who brought his chain saw over to remove the stump of the tree that had grown up between two fenceboards, losening the nails just enough to give Hannah the ability to push the boards apart more. We have two shiny new fence boards that only remotely match the other boards (they're similar in color) in the fence.

Thanks, Helen. Check back soon for more exciting adventures of Hannah the Wonderdog!

more gruntles
Last modified: Sun Aug 19 22:34:07 PDT 2001