As soon as we found out our daughter and her roommates were leasing a house, we said to Paige, "DO NOT GET A DOG!" "WE MEAN IT!" "SERIOUSLY!" "NO DOGS!"
You've heard of Murphy's Laws? Well, I have my own contribution: PRUNELLA'S LAW OF PARENTAL INFLUENCE. Prunella's Law states: the amount of parental influence one exerts is inversely proportional to the distance, in miles, between parent and child. In other words, parental clout diminishes with every tick of the odometer.
Unlike Tito, whose grandcat status is merely an honorary one (he's really Kelli's cat [see blog dated 10/11/2012] and, therefore, not related to me), Ranger is family. He is Paige's, bought and paid for with the money her dad sends for important stuff like make-up and hair products, Red Bull, ramen noodles, and the occasional text book.
If Paige thought she was going to surprise us with a dog when we rolled into Lubbock, she was wrong. In the days leading up to our trip earlier this month, the signs were there. Mysterious charges to PetSmart that she explained away by saying she was taking care of a friend's puppy and had to purchase some food for it. (Considering that there were several charges, that was one voracious puppy.) But the most telling of all was her reply, when her dad called and asked if she would like us to bring our old dog crate with us, the one that had been our bull terrier's, she said, "YES!"
So, when we drove up to the girls' apartment on Sunday, July 7, to help them move, there's Paige walking a shaggy mutt on a leash. Richard and I looked at each other and rolled our eyes, but we knew she had us over a barrel. And she knew she had us over a barrel. And we knew that she knew that we knew she had us over a barrel. The only one who didn't have a clue what was going on was the barrel itself, Ranger.
Ranger was adopted from a shelter. From the looks of him, he is part Australian cattle dog. His tail is bobbed, but whether that's because he was born that way (there's a breed of ACD that is stumpy tailed), or because the previous owner had it docked, I can't say. He's brown with long, grey guard hairs that give him an elderly look despite the fact that he's only four months old. He is, without a doubt, the the best behaved puppy I have ever been around. Most pups are bouncing off the walls, but Ranger never jumped on people, barked or had an accident. His only vice was chewing, and even that was minor league stuff compared to the things Grracie, who was part alligator, destroyed when she was a puppy.
There is no doubt that Ranger is one lucky dog. He went from spending his days in a shelter to a house with a backyard, a cat companion, an assortment of lovely designer neckwear, scads of sorority girls to dote on him, and free drugs (the vet prescribed Benadryl for his allergies). Definitely the canine version of hitting the lottery.
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