Pet Posts – Tina the Escape Artist

Our ‘middle’ dog is a smallish (55 pound) Black Lab named Tina. She’s my son’s dog for the most part and much like his cat (See Minion the Evil Cat Post), she’s got his personality. She’s loveable to a degree, but just looking at her it’s easy to tell she’s ornery.

Tina was all of six months when she got really sick and spent five days in the vet hospital. Needless to say, when she got home, we spoiled her endlessly and to such a level that she is now a brat. She does what she wants and that includes hurdling our four foot fence to launch herself to freedom. She once bit the neighbor’s dog during one prison break, but fortunately it wasn’t bad, our neighbors are good and everything turned out okay. But now Tina stays tied. She’s the only dog in the neighborhood that has to be both tied and inside a fence. It lends to her badass persona and, like my son, I think she likes it.

Tina has a decent scar above her one eye through what would be her eyebrow, if in fact she had eyebrows or at least eyebrows that I could discern from the rest of her furry face. My son loves the scar. “Tina is so badass”, he’ll say. And I have to agree. Most dogs you see in my neighborhood don’t tout scars, let alone a rather large one down through the eyebrow. She looks like she was in a gang fight, and the truth isn’t far from it. She was wrestling with her buddy Bear in the backyard and somehow an injury was incurred. Yep, Tina’s badass.

Tina has a few quirks that are strangely endearing. She chatters her teeth when she’s excited. Loudly. Also, if you scratch the side of her face below and sort of diagonal to her eye, she’ll snarl. That’s a fun one to do. Then we ask her, “Tina, why are you so angry?” It’s absurd humor, but fun all the same.

Tina’s new escape trick is to somehow get out of her doggie crate. We can lock both latches and still she manages to slide out. At first, I thought I had simply forgotten to lock the crate. I’m a dolt, no secret in that, so it made perfect sense. But then other people, people who don’t claim to be a dolt, have also put her away. People who assured me that they were capable of locking a doggie crate (unlike, I suppose, me.) Yet upon our return home, there she was wagging her tail and chattering her teeth at the door while Bear wiggled and whined in his crate. I’m still not sure how she gets out, but since it’s obvious that #1 she’s getting out and #2 there’s an element of danger involved, I’ve just given up even trying to crate her. So far, there’s been no issue with her running free throughout the house and unlike the great outdoors, she’s not apt to assault the neighbor dog or get hit by a car. And she’s not going all Houdini on us dislocating God knows what in order to get out of the crate. It’s enough of a win-win to satisfy me.

So Tina’s our middle dog. She’s got some battle scars and she’s got some mad skills at the escaping. She looks tough and she can back it up. She chatters at us in affection and takes it in stride when we tickle her into a snarl. She’s a damn good dog. And we love her for it.


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