We’ve begun hearing the first claps of springtime thunder around here and it makes us miss Kylie even more – if that’s possible. She had always been especially scared of loud noises, which is why we called her Chicken Little. Of course then when we found out about the drive-by we felt terrible and once again realized we had been really bad parents!
Anyway, once we moved to the mainland and had thunderstorms to deal with regularly, they didn’t just frighten Kylie, they would send her under the bed for the rest of the day, shaking and cowering. It was heartbreaking and absolutely nothing would console her, until…
One day, I don’t know how we got the idea, but during a particularly thunderous thunder storm we started encouraging her to BARK back at the thunder. And she did! Meekly at first, but with encouragement she got braver and of course louder! And louder, and louder, and louder, barking, howling, and carrying on like a lunatic!! All the while we would cheer her on and she loved it, and we loved seeing her brave and empowered instead of terrified. Knowing that thunderstorms are a common fear for dogs, we thought we should do an infomercial or something about how to empower your pooch, and get rich.
Then we went on vacation to hawaii – the only place we went on vacation without Kylie – and a friend of ours stayed at our house to take care of Kylie. One day when we called to see how they were doing, the friend who sounded very tired told us they were fine but there had been a series of storms the night before, in the middle of the night, and well therefore she was pretty tired at work that day.
“Oops, sorry about that,” we apologized. We felt a little guilty, but we explained our motivation for encouraging the foul-weather ferociousness. Fortunately there weren’t any more stormy nights during our trip and we brought our friend a large quantity of macadamia nuts and all was forgiven!
We of course continued to instigate the insanity, especially in colorado where thunder comes almost daily from late May to early July.
Right on top of Kylie’s head, near the middle of that white stripe, there was a bump on her little skull. You couldn’t see it but you could feel it, it had always been there, a little left of center (which seemed appropriate).
Our first thought.. devil horns!
But there was only one and it wasn’t really in the right place.
Then we realized she must have been a Unicorn!!
It was a little off-center because you know the unicorn’s horn is a spiral.
It made perfect sense and explained why Kylie was so very UNIque!
And the winner is…
That hand-puppet was the best purchase from a dollar store ever!
Well since somebody noticed something missing in the previous snapshot we had better go ahead and explain how Kylie got her gangster name, “Kylie Three Toes,” in addition to all her other nick names.
Several years ago we spotted a fairly innocent looking bump on the inside of Kylie’s back left foot. Dr. Monica took a look and couldn’t really tell what was going on so we decided we better remove it and have a biopsy done. We got the news in just a few days that it was in fact a nerve sheath tumor, so Kylie had to have a second surgery this time to remove the entire toe.
Fortunately, with the amputation we got good margins and fortunately Kylie hardly noticed the absence. At first we called it her “magic monkey paw,” but Monica did not appreciate that so we settled on her “lucky fin.” But after awhile we didn’t notice the absence either, it was just part of who she was.
One of our favorite photos of Kylie, ever – and that’s saying a lot! This was taken up in the mountains. Kylie loved exploring the great outdoors, especially climbing around on rocks. It took a little convincing when we first moved to colorado to get her to get her feet wet, but once she did she became some sort of river dog, more than happy to wade in and get those paws nice and muddy!
When Kylie was about 3 or 4 she got really sick and we were really worried. We took her to the vet and they ran all kinds of tests and at some point they came in to the room where we were waiting nervously and said, “you know that she’s been shot, right?”
“WHAT? Wait.. When?.. What?” We were thinking that they were saying that’s why she was sick now and we just couldn’t figure out how that was possible since she was rarely even out of our sight. We were very confused. Then the doctor, who had no bedside manner whatsoever (this was pre-Dr. Monica of course), realized we were confused and explained that she wasn’t shot recently and that it had nothing to do with her current condition; which btw turned out to be colitis, caused by stress because we were moving. She had just taken x-rays of Kylie and saw two bb’s, one in her neck and one in her ribs. (See the bright white dot on the left side of her ribs.) It still took awhile for us to process what that meant…
What it meant was that when Kylie arrived at the Hawaiian Humane Society at the approximate age of 8 months, her wounds had already healed, which means that she was probably no older than 6 months old when somebody shot her with a bb gun! Can you imagine somebody shooting at something so cute?! Even if it was getting into your trash or something?! What is wrong with people??!
Of course we felt terrible because being the bad parents that we were, we had regularly made fun of Kylie for being scared of things like bubble wrap and paint ball guns – We called her chicken little! ( I know.)
Then again, knowing that she had survived a drive-by gave Kylie a lot of street cred! We started calling her an OG -“original gangster”- and joked about her potential career as a rapper. But it certainly helped to explain a lot of her issues, and we understood her a lot better.
Kylie was a tough little street dog, a scrapper, a survivor. She came a long way to her own chaise lounge and coach collars, but she was still a scrapper. Apparently you can take a dog out of the street but you can’t take the street out of the dog. And that’s why we love her!