.. The Day The Dogs Were Stuck Together....
The time was 1970. The place, my backyard.
Now everyone knows how impressionable a 7 yr. old is, and that included me in 1970. The 1970's was a great time for a child growing up. It seems like parents were a lot more relaxed about where we went, what we did, and who our friends were. Most of my friends were animal lovers and we spent alot of time visiting neighborhood dogs, knowing all their names and their favorite snacks. My friend Wesleys dog, Tippy, a large, wire-haired OtterHound, was always getting loose. He was a funny ole dog, very playful and clumsy and VERY much in love with my dog, Cinnamin.
Whenever Tippy got loose, he made a beeline for my house, and Cinnamin. Cinnamin was a little Shepard mix with gorgeous soulful eyes.For the most part, Cinnamin didn't really recipricate Tippys attentions, and he usually got a good nip for his efforts. But on this one particular day, the day I'll never forget, my girl was acting strange..she was anxious and whining, and seemed to be waiting for something..Instead of sitting quietly with me as I read a book, like she normally did, she was antsy and nervous, and CONSTANTLY licking herself! Yuck! (I found out later she was in what was called a Heat or Estrous).
Then Tippy came. In reality, he must have smelled her from the next street over from where he lived. Cinnamin stood up, ears pricked, tail up, and whined deep in her throat as she danced from paw to paw in anticipation of his arrival..I was curious. She NEVER acted like that when he came! Her normal reaction would have been to growl and bark sharply at him. I watched as they ran up to one another, sniffing excitedly, whining, playing in little short bursts of energy. She acted like she was teasing him!
I laughed at their antics,and went inside to get some things, letting them play. About 15 minutes went by, and I went back out to check on the dogs again. Something was wrong. Cinnamin was yelping and crying, and Tippy doing the same. I couldn't see them until I walked down the hill a ways and stopped dead in my tracks..What the heck? Was I seeing what I thought I was seeing? Were these two dogs STUCK together rear to rear? I was frozen in shock, but my dogs' yelps and cries spurned me into action. I raced frantically up the hill yelling for my dad. Bursting into the house, screaming "DAD!!!! Cinnamin and Tippy are STUCK TOGETHER!!!! Help her, he's KILLING HER!!!!!". At first he looked at me like I had two heads, then, as realization set in, he said, "oh, shit..", got a bucket of ice cold water, and headed outsided to my direction.
The dogs, exhausted at this point and panting furiously, looked ridiculous, all stuck together...I just stood there, looking sheepishly at my father. "What's wrong with them, Dad?", I asked him, "Why are they like that?". I swear he blushed, and seemed flustered when he answered very quickly, "Their in a tie". He dumped the water over them and with a yelp, they broke apart, each one licking their own privates gingerly. My dad quickly walked back into the house as to avoid any more embarrassing questions, leaving me with even MORE questions at his answer. A tie? What the heck is a tie? Here's what I pictured:
I didn't find out the answer to that question for YEARS afterwards..and when I did, my thoughts went back to that day and how naive I was! It always makes me laugh to think about it...Oh for the good old days when life problems seemed simple. Oh, and remember everyone, SPAY AND NEUTER YOUR PETS! Let's not confuse anymore 7 yr. olds!