The Troubles



This ain’t no easy bark for me. That’s why I’ve been silent for so long. Our pack has gone through some big time changes and we’re all still trying to wrap our heads around what happened.

The Troubles started in April when we brought Mama and Shiloh into our pack. They were the sorriest dogs we ever saw and there was no question they needed a place to hang out and get better.

Before we agreed to take them, mom asked us if it was okay to bring the California girls to Asherpark . Me and Jack said sure. Tess said she supposed it was the right thing to do.

We had a brief honeymoon when all five of us got along and then The Troubles started. It began when little Shiloh growled at Tess for getting too close to Mama. Tess went off like a heat seeking missile and pounced on Shiloh. Dad grabbed Tess and gave her a good talking to.

One thing led to another and whenever Tess and Shiloh came face to face Shiloh would growl or show her teeth and the fight was on. Funny thing was Tess never bit Shiloh or used her teeth on her, but the noise was terrible.

Pretty soon we were all walking on eggshells. Tess went through intensive training and learned all sorts of handy things, but she never learned to leave Shiloh alone. Me and mom tried to get Shiloh to stop making faces at Tess, but it didn’t work.

One day Tess and Shiloh got into it right at mom’s feet. When mom tried to separate them she got bit real bad. There was lots of bad language and blood everywhere. Tess went into the time out box while we mopped up the blood and tended to mom’s fingers.

I’ve never seen mom so sad. It didn’t help that her fingers were aching like nobody’s business. She said she couldn’t bear to give up on Mama and Shiloh and she didn’t know what to do for Tess.

For the next few weeks we lived parallel lives. Shiloh and Tess could never be together unless Tess was on a leash. Let me tell you, that was no easy time trying to live a normal life with a psychopath like Tess.

I tried talking to Tess, but she could only hear me through her crazy redhead side. Tess told me she was the alpha female of the pack and she wasn’t going to tolerate some used up little mutt being disrespectful.

I said, “Tess, everyone knows you run the place. Shiloh doesn’t want to be boss dog, she just wants you to give her a little space.”

Tess looked at me with a mixture of pity and disgust.

“You just don’t get it, Ash. I have to be in control. It’s the border collie in me. I will never be happy at Asherpark with Shiloh here.”

I was so sad I hung my head and tears dribbled down my snout. I knew in my heart that Tess was right and either she or Shiloh would have to go.

But how could we send little Shiloh and Mama away after what they had been through? And how could we ever let Tess go when we all love her so much?

Tess ran off to give Shiloh the stink eye through the fence while me and mom sat real still. Big changes were in the wind but we didn’t know which way the wind would blow.







Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.