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Ariba’s Tracking Adventure and the Rest of the Story

Today was a day of luck and chance.  The story has more than one happy ending.  I had been trying to get my baby BC (Ariba) in a Tracking Test.  We had entered 5 tests.  The first 3 tests we were the 3rd or 4th alternate in the test...which meant we weren't getting in.  Our 4th test.. was an 8 dog test.  The were 16 dogs entered and we were picked as the 7th alternate.  Your odds don't get much worse than this.  Our 5th test entered was for a 10 dog test with 14 dogs entered.  We were the 10th dog picked which meant we got in by the skin of our teeth.  Today we were at the tracking test.  We pulled the 10th track...which is not good luck.  This means that you are most likely going to run the oldest track.  The weather was in the 90's, humid, hot with only a hint of breeze.  Not ideal tracking weather.  

So let's look at this.  A 10 dog tracking test.  We entered as the 10th dog and we were scheduled to run the 10th track.  Ariba by the way is 10 months old.  Now I for one am not superstitious.

All my dogs have certain collar colors to fit there personality.  Raven is red.  A very stable color.  Raven is a conservative by heart.  Very reliable and consistent.  Misha is hot pink.  She is of course the Kamikazee Kid.  All out or nothing.  She loves to be wild and dig holes.  Just a fun loving personality.  Ariba is royal blue.  This is her personality.  Elegant and dignified with a touch of class.  They have 2 flags set out for the tracking test to indicate the direction of the first leg.  Her tracking flags were royal blue. 

With the heat and the age of the track....it wasn't in our favor.  Ariba managed to do her track in 6 minutes which is at a pretty fast pace.  So now she is officially a Tracking Dog on June 6, 1999.

 So you wonder where I am going with this story....
and now for the rest of the story.......as Paul Harvey would say................

We were coming home driving along the Interstate.  Up ahead...I saw something running down the middle of the Interstate in the fast lane coming towards us...I said to my husband Dan...Can you tell what that is???  He replied..."A dog."  The small pickup in front of us slowed and swerved to miss him...by this time I had already slowed way down and pulled off to the side of the road.  It was an adult  Golden Retriever.  I got out of the driver's side and went in front of the van.  I called out to him and he came trotting towards me...Goldens are such honest dogs...if a human calls you must at least go by them.  He stopped short of me by about 10 feet.  Then gave me this look, like I really don't know you...about this time I was praying he wouldn't bolt back and away from me and into an oncoming car...so I crouched down further and made some nice doggie *Please* come here sounds.  He lowered his head and wagged his tail and came to me.  When I had my hand in his collar, Dan got out of the van and brought me a leash.  He did not resist.  He had a cut over one of his eyes and his nose was banged up but he was not limping.  He got into the van without question.  He was hot and tired.  He drank the water from the dog dish in the back.  He then looked out the window but shortly after that laid down.  He was lost, tired, sore and miserable.  But he was a true Golden...a gentleman above all.  He didn't try to harass the 3 BC girls all in their crates who were looking at him....like where did he come from.

 We brought him home and put him an X-pen in the basement to cool off.  He drank the bowl full of water without hesitating.  I called the phone number off of his tag.  No answer....no answering machine.  Hmmmm....what next.  So I called the County Sheriff 's Dept. to see if anyone had called in a missing dog.  No luck there either.  I was on the phone with the dispatch person giving her all the information they requested when I heard another phone in the background ring... he told me....hold on....now what kind of dog did you say this was...Oh, we have the dog's owners on the other line right now.  I got goose bumps on my arms.  Today was certainly a day for coincidences...a little bit of the Twilight Zone for those of you whom remember the *old* TV show.  I gave the Police directions to our house so the owners could pick up their dog.

Briggs...the Golden...was being transported in a pull behind trailer behind a pickup truck.  He was in a plastic crate and somehow the door came open.  He jumped out of the trailer while the truck was doing 65 mph down the Interstate.  A man in another pick up truck that was behind them pulled along side of the owners pick up truck and began to wave wildly for them to pull over.  At first the owners thought this guy was into *road rage*...but the man in the pick up persisted so they pulled off onto the nearest off ramp.  He told them that the dog jumped out of the trailer and was running on the Interstate.  They traveled the road up and back three times...looking for Briggs.  He really had no place to go...because the Interstate is all fenced in...They kept expecting to see him in the ditch.  They finally pulled off about 6 miles from our house to call the Police.  They first called the State Patrol..who put them in touch with the local Sheriff's department.

We also found out that it was Brigg's 6th birthday.  Now how many regular *doggie* just plain dog people keep track of their dog's birthdays.  They were so happy that he was alive.  The husband had figured that he would never again place eyes on Brigg's again...who was his hunting buddy.  This time Brigg's got to ride in the back spare seat in the pick up.  Something tells me...he will never again ride in the crate in the back...which was a safe place for him....but just not today.

So where is the moral of this story.  Life is full of coincidences. Some things are just meant to be.  Do I believe in chance...not really.....but something brought us together today...to be in the right place at the right time.