Tino Meets the World
I haven’t written about our dog Tino in awhile, so I thought it was time for another Tale of Tails, Tino style.
When we rescued Tino, he was sick with distemper. Very sick. He and his brother Bernie lived in our backyard and carport recovering for weeks. We had to euthanize Bernie once the distemper took hold of his brain and he started having seizures. But Tino recovered – a testament to his inner strength.
We kept him isolated in the yard and away from our Sally until the vet gave the all clear. Once Tino was cleared for socialization and exercise we were anxious to get him out for some walks in the neighborhood. He had an injured back leg – we weren’t sure what had happened, whether he’d been hit by a car or kicked or what, but he couldn’t use his rear left leg at all. But that didn’t stop him, he hobbled around all over the yard without problem and I wanted him to build up some strength after being so sick.
The first day we tried to take him out for a walk in the neighborhood he refused. We got him to the end of the driveway and he put on the brakes and would not go further. We tried to get him to go out multiple times and he just would not leave the edge of the property. Even using Sally to lead him, he refused. Food didn’t entice him, being a little forceful didn’t work…he was just not leaving our yard.
Finally, one day I decided to put him in the car and drive him to the park with Sally. He got in the car just fine as he’d been doing that all along for trips to the vet. I got him in and drove to the park and he loved it! This park had just a short trail with a little bit of a stream. I kept him on the leash the whole time, but he had a grand time sniffing and smelling and getting wet in the mud.
The next day, I thought I would try a walk in the neighborhood again and surprise, surprise, he walked down the driveway to the street and around the block without a problem, no stopping at the end of the driveway, no refusals at all and no coaxing required.
I often wonder what it was that made him realize that it was okay to leave the property. Would that simple trip to the park have made that difference? Was it that we brought him back from the park? I’m sure there were deep abandonment issues going on, but I don’t know – he’d been to the vet multiple times and been brought back. Whatever it was, whatever insight he got, or dots he connected in his head, I’m grateful as it opened up a whole new world for Tino and he enjoyed every second of it.
We had his leg repaired a couple of months later, after he got his strength back and he was soon going for daily runs with the family.