The Princess and the Starlet; A Rescue Story
Kay, It was nice to meet you at Ft. Funston last weekend. I know several people who go to your web site, but don't subscribe to the newsletter. I've provided the text and graphics from the rescue article I wrote, if you'd like to add it to your site. -- Scott Daniels (Forever Kati's Dad)
I knew I would lose the battle. She wanted a puppy, and nothing I said or did would change her mind. I had to put my foot down about a few things. I wasn t going to let a dog on the furniture, nor would I have a dog kissing my face. At the breeder s house, eight vizslas sat on various pieces of furniture in her family room. In the center of the same room, an exercise pen surrounded a squirming tub of puppies. As I opened the pen, the breeder reminded me that only one puppy was available. Just then a little puppy with a red ribbon for a collar, squirmed out of the tub and staggered across the inch thick floor of newspaper like a little drunken sailor. I knelt to her level and she placed a paw on one of my feet, the other paw on my knee and kissed me on the lips!
I nervously picked her up and held her to my chest like an infant. As I looked at the breeder, I noticed her odd expression and assumed that I had broken some rule about new puppies. She smiled and said, that s amazing, she s the only puppy in the litter without a family, and she just picked you&it s like she knew you were the One!
For the next eleven years of my life, through a marriage, divorce, good times and tough times, my little red collared girl taught me the meaning of unconditional love. She melted my heart in a day, broke every rule and irrevocable changed the priorities in my world. A lifetime of vizsla kisses, spooning under the sheets and doggie walks couldn t prepare me for last year. In November, Princess Kati (Ch. Kati Leanyka Voros Vadaz) died in my arms.
Her trusted companion, Alex (Golden Empire s T Alexander) tried his best to fill those big shoes, but like his dad, I think he suffered from her absence too. For almost five months, the two bachelors did our best to ignore the pain, until the missing vizsla-girl spirit was too much. I couldn t imagine raising a puppy with an eleven-year-old male vizsla in the house, so a rescue dog seemed our best option. I contacted Judy Jackson and she told me about a vizsla girl from Los Angeles with separation anxiety. I was headed out of the country, and Judy was sure she d be placed before I returned. Three weeks later, I got the call, Well you got your wish. I don t know why, but she s still here if you re interested.
Miss Hollywood with the mysterious past started her first night with a hot bath and a big dinner. Then she had to explore everything in her new home and find all of Alex's toys. He, of course, was beside himself, but fortunately more curious than concerned. As soon as the dust had settled, Hollywood fell fast asleep in my lap. She seemed very content. I gave her a bed on the floor next to mine. In the morning, I invited her into the bed and she didn't budge until I woke.
The next morning was very sunny, and we took an early trip to Alamo Square for our first family romp in the park. Initially, Holly was tentative about ranging too much. She said hello to the other dogs and especially the people. Then someone threw a Kong! She regressed to puppy hood and began to race around in circles and run fast around the group.
"Chase me, chase me if you can...no...ok, then try to sit there like a lump while I bark in your face and taunt you."
"Ah, so I have your attention?" "Chase me...eat my shadow, you're too slow for me!"
I looked up in the low morning sunlight to see a silhouette of Holly with her butt under her running around Alex trying to get him to play. She barked and ran past him until, like so many times in the past with the love of his life, he gave chase. I saw the joy on his face as he remembered how to play. Then, for just a moment, it didn't hurt so much inside, and the smile on my face didn't require any thought.
Three weeks have past, and the dogs are inseparable. They wrestle and play together constantly, eat from the same bowl and sleep on the same bed. Hollywood no longer waits for me at the front door, she has a home and she knows I will be there soon. Alex has become energized and joyful again, and his dad has too.
As I sit here trying to conclude my story, a little vizsla nose squeezes between my forearms and smiles into my face as if to say I just needed to tell you how much I love you. I am reminded how far I must go each day to earn the friendship and devotion my vizslas give without expectation, and I realize that this is actually my second rescue. The first took place eleven and a half years ago when a little vizsla girl with a red ribbon around her neck taught me the meaning of love and joy, and opened my eyes to another world. The second was a few weeks ago when this wonderful little vizsla took away my pain and reminded me that there is no limit to our ability to love again. So far in my life, I ve been saved by a princess and a starlet! I am forever grateful to Evelyn Hilbert, Michele & Larry Coburn, Carol Dostal, Kelly Kaiser, Don & Judy Jackson, and all the other wonderful vizsla people with whom I share these experiences. I can t help but believe that somewhere in heaven, a little vizsla princess sits in a grass-covered field with a smile on her face.