It happened on a nippy January night around 9:00 pm. My husband Kevin and I were in charge of one dog each. I had Kellie, the border collie mix, and Kevin led Abby, our "Benji" mix. The four of us were walking amongst the high rise office buildings in Redwood Shores. Lighted, empty offices helped us keep to the concrete path that wound along the dark waters of the San Francisco Bay. We had come to a long stretch of shoreline that was actually concrete, like the ledge of a swimming pool. So, Kellie, the please-don't-let-the-water-touch-me-dog, stopped to stretch her neck over the ledge. The water was black and quiet, and probably looked quite solid and walkable. Kellie certainly thought so, because she didn't dive or jump, she walked in. And the water fell away, then rushed over her, and Kellie had a reaction. She swam! Two strokes, paws up on concrete ledge, me, pulling both her front legs, dog out, me soaked. No harm done. Kellie shook herself, while Kevin and I re-lived the moment, laughing and shivering. Our walk resumed for approximately 10 seconds when we heard a splash. Abby, who always walks 4 - 8 paces to the rear of the walking group, and the witness to all that had previously taken place, acted on what she had learned. She didn't walk onto any such dark solid-looking surface, she leaped into what she knew was refreshing cool, wetness. What she miss caluclauted was that Kellie weighs half what she weighs. And Abby, being the dainty house-dog that she is, does not swim. She sinks. So, she sunk. Kevin dropped to all fours, drove his arm into the icy waters, grabbed Abby's collar, snatched her front leg, yelled for me to help, and we dragged Abby back onto dry land.
To review, Abby made a decision based on what she had witnessed. And although Kevin groaned a bit about how wet and cold he was, all I knew was that Abby is an observant dog.
Causes Shelley Frost Supports
I have devoted much of my life to the causes faced by animals subjected to factory farming, medical research, zoos/circuses, and cruelty/homelessness. I...