Wednesday, January 14, 2009


The first week in December of 2006, I was standing at my bedroom window just before getting dressed to go sing in a Christmas choir; I had one hour before I needed to leave. What do I see trotting up our driveway? Four of the most pitiful dog specimens I've ever seen. They came right around back to where we have part of the back property fenced off for our dogs and began barking - they wanted in! I could tell that they were litter mates of a VERY mixed breed. I thought to myself, "it's going to be in the teens tonight and they are all skin and bones - what am I going to do?" So I went outside and they ran under a storage building we have. The black one of the pack was barking at me like all get out. I knew that I didn't have time to argue with her, so I got a bale of straw and blocked off the north wind, got the biggest bowl I could find and mixed up some dog food and warm milk in it, and put out some water for them, hoping this would do until we could address them in the morning. JP was still truck driving and was due for home time that night, but he wasn't home yet, so I went to my choir cantata. By the time I got back home JP had arrived and was wondering about the critters barking at him from under the storage shed, so I gave him the full update.

In the morning we went outside and they were all gone - I was so worried because of the pitiful condition I had seen them in and the bitter cold weather they were having to endure. I just hoped that they were okay. Around midday JP was looking out our living room window and noticed the little black one running down the road. I grabbed a leash, two slices of American cheese, and we jumped in the car to go try to catch her. When JP got us near the stray dog he stopped the car and I got out and crouched down, thinking that she'd be wild and probably not come to me. Quite the contrary, she almost took my fingers off to get to the cheese. So we brought her home and we could see she was suffering from malnutrition and had several patches of mange on her skin. Our vet confirmed this and we started having to dip her once a week in this strong stuff that smelled kind of like gasoline, then she'd have to stay outside until she dried. This proved to be quite a challenge since it was wintertime. Even to this day, bath time is still very traumatic for her.

We chose to name her Corrie because she looked like the pictures you see of survivors of Nazi concentration camps , so she's named after Corrie Ten Boom, the author of "The Hiding Place" who was a survivor of one of those camps. She is a wonderful little girl; where her mange has healed her hair came in grey and black, so she looks old even though she's just about 2 yrs old now. She was about six months old when we found her. But I guess she's been through enough to have grey hair so it's ok and it reminds us of where she came from. She is our feeding time clock, around 10-15 minutes prior to their regular feeding times she starts to stare me down. I swear sometimes she doesn't blink - she'll come up and put her two little front feet on my chair, I'll push her back down and the game begins. It's kind of reminiscent of the movie Rainman, "of course it's fifteen minutes to feeding time!". Our other dogs have nothing to worry about because Corrie is pleading and reminding each and every meal time. On work day mornings, after all the dogs have trekked out and are back inside, while I'm getting JP's coffee ready Corrie comes up to me and wiggles until her head is between my knees and I rub her belly and scratch her butt and then she takes off like a rocket to go pounce on Daisy or whoever she can. She's just so wound up after being given attention she can't stand it. She loves to lie outside in the sunshine on a warm day and warm her bones, probably because she suffered through so much cold that first winter as a stray. I think she is truly thankful to be with us, as we are to have her.

Blessings from the holler!

1 comment:

MAXMOM said...

Dear Mrs JP
The humanity and compassion which you and your hubby display is something truly special. Thank you for being the rescuer of so many animals! How wonderful that you both share this passion!
Sending lotsaluv