I recently wrote an article entitled “Man’s Best Friend, My Best Friend”. This blog was about an animal who seemed to be emotionally connected to every move I made. Long before Bandy’s arrival “Foxy Lady” had joined our tribe in 1986.
Foxy Lady was a Sheltie and she was the worst of the worst. She was picked out of her AKC litter because she was adorable and continually barked at herself in the mirror. We thought this was such a cute trait and immediately claimed her as our own. Years later we would discover that the “mirror buddy thing” was a sign of stupidity.
Foxy came home and made herself at home with her slutty name. She instantly fell in love with cosmetics and took to rooting through all four ‘ladies of the house’ purses. Daily we found her black lips covered in various shades of pink as we discarded the chewed up shells of our favorite lipsticks.
Foxy was bad. She was so so bad! One of my favorite childhood photos captured Foxy as a puppy at Christmas. It was our tradition to put real candy canes on the tree and the temptation was just too great for our little devilish dog to resist. The photo shows a downed Christmas tree with a fuzzy little puppy pawing a fruit flavored candy cane beside it. An episode of Growing Pains on the box set t.v. was captured in the background. Having our Christmas tree pulled over by this diva of a dog became an annual tradition.
Foxy dined on garbage, ran away three times and twice got hit by a car resulting in 2 hip surgeries. She snarled, barked and bit at strangers and sometimes her own family. Still, she was exceedingly loved. She was a Kardashian in the making.
Foxy was not fixed because that was not generally done in the eighties despite all of Bob Barker’s warnings. She was not the kind of girl to let a man have his way with her and ferociously fought off any humping suitors. We never worried about her getting knocked up and the prospect was definitely out of our minds by the time she’d reached eleven.
Our family was in flux and traveling state to state like gypsies when we discovered our senior/feminist dog had gotten herself laid and was consequently “expecting”.
Foxy gave birth to a litter of eight in the back of our Chevy van. The mate she had settled on was an AKC registered American Eskimo. She had waited but did not settle.
We found good homes for seven of the eight puppies (including one named Sugar Baby who’d had half of his left front paw removed in a freak accident). He had unknowingly squirmed in to the stairwell of the driver’s side of the van. My dad climbed in and shut the door and the rest was history. I’ve never seen a more remorseful man.
Ewok was the puppy we kept. He favored a Spitz more than any of the litter and took his seat as co-captain with my dad. As he grew he took after his mother and became an asshole. He bit countless strangers and their tires as they peeled away from our house in horror. He could do no wrong in my dad’s eyes and sought shelter in his lap to escape punishment. I still swear his beady little eyes read like a ticker that said “I win”.
Foxy lived until she was 23 and her son Ewok lived until he was 18. Both chased cars while practically blind, senile and hard of hearing.
Only the good die young.