It’s been two weeks since Bear crossed the rainbow bridge. I didn’t really realize how much it affected Deycon.  As I said before, he’s slept by my bed since then, but is now back to his usual antics. When friends read this blog they think I’m making this all up, but seriously, you just can’t.

Deycon is still locked in battle with the Nerf war and Rocky, the squirrel. I’ve become so accustomed to his squirrel adventures that I barely wake up to let him try, try again. I hear the whine and I open the door. Recently, I was quite glad that I had locked the door one night, because it gave me a moment to wake up a little more. While turning the lock, I noticed it was still dark outside. Rocky doesn’t usually come around until the sun is up. Just on a hunch I turned on the deck light. It wasn’t Rocky…. It was one of those “squirrels” with the big white stripe down its back. I turned the light out very quickly and distracted Deycon for a few minutes until Pepe Le Pew was off the deck and gone.

Wildlife around here is more than this city girl can handle sometimes. Now that the weather is warmer we get to go out more and since Deycon is such a big puppy, I was leaving my bedroom door open.  There is a screen door flap that he can use to go in and out of the yard while I’m gone.  Notice I said WAS leaving open. Last week, after a particularly bizarre evening at work, it was one thing after another. Wearily, I get in the front door, call for him and he doesn’t come. Twice more I called and finally, Deycon came running up and did “The Deycon Pounce.” We say our hellos, I let him out and filled his water bowl and I headed off for bed. Usually he’s in front of my jumping and playing all the way. I noticed it was strange that he wasn’t and I soon found out why. I hadn’t realized that if he can get out…. Someone can get in. Sitting there on my bed was a raccoon! I tell you it was 23 feet tall, weighed 382 pounds had claws the size of elephants and was just as startled to see me as I was to see him! I let out a scream and he ran out the screen flap. I’ll never be able to identify the culprit. He was wearing a mask. But don’t worry about Deycon, he was hiding behind me the whole time.

The next night I walked in again to no Deycon greeting. He’s usually waiting by the door but I noticed he was sitting in the kitchen half a room away, tail wagging and ears at attention. Several things happened all at once… apparently when I came in my boys were expecting “the enemy”, I was bombarded with Nerf bullets and Deycon joined the fray trying to catch as many as possible, I ducked, he sprang and my boys ran for cover. They’re lucky they’re not all homeless now!

Having this guy around is the best thing that’s happened to me in a long time. As long as I keep the coffee table and night stands clear we’ll be fine. Well actually, if we don’t, he’ll do it for us. As one of my human boys says, “That tail is lethal!”

A few months ago Guardian Angels for Soldier’s Pet built Deycon has his own Facebook page as a Public Figure. He and Snoco another foster pet and conspiracy brother chat and write about their adventures.  “Deycon” posted that hopefully the next outing to Petco wouldn’t involve the State Police. We finally made an uneventful trip. Deycon is now well known and recognized when we go. I’m still not sure if that’s a good thing. He’s big and friendly and I get a chance to tell everyone about him and Guardian Angels for Soldier’s Pet with every new friend he makes. He’s also known at the dog park as the Gentle Giant, or “that foster dog.” We’ve seen a lot of the same families, although we haven’t seen Peanut again or for that matter that little Chihuahua.

He is such a big guy that he gets into trouble just by circumstance. I have been dieting for weeks now and finally gave in to temptation. I was making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on the counter and left it there to get the jelly from the fridge. I came back to find only the plain side of bread and to see Deycon eating something and jumping up in the air. I hurt myself laughing when I realized that he was trying to jump up to get at the peanut butter that was stuck on the roof of his mouth. He looked so embarrassed and I wanted to help, but just kept laughing so hard. Poor pup. When he “wrote” on his Facebook page about it, his mom wrote… “eh…table food and jumping. all that obedience school gone to waste!”

His mom told me that he was going to be my best buddy and follow me all around. She certainly wasn’t kidding. When I have a bad day, he nudges me and flips my arm on him for attention. If I don’t get up at the crack of dawn to let him out he sits by my bed and whines. Last week, her prediction became startling reality for me. During the night, I had to make a trip to the little nurse’s room and didn’t realize he was right at the foot of the bed. He wrote on his page…. “I’ve got a question…. You’ve all seen my picture, right? I’m not a little guy by any means. So tell me this… as big as I am, how can you possibly miss me? Even if you don’t turn the light on… ROFB!!! Eileen hit that door hard.” Try explaining a bruised cheek to people at work as “tripped over the dog.” No one believes you.

Last week when we went to the county dog park, there was no one there. Okay, so it was 7 in the morning and it was rainy! We wandered around and found a “different” kind of dog park. It was a petting zoo more or less. We learned that the huge dogs that humans call horses just give funny looks when my buddy is around. Then as he put on his page, there was a tiny puppy with a shell whose arms and legs disappeared when he sniffed it. Lastly there were the giant dogs called cows that don’t like to be barked at. I don’t think the caretakers were too amused.

He is such a curious puppy, too. He sniffs at anything and everything. On Tuesday there was a tadpole about the size of a quarter on the front steps. After a long walk, we approached the porch and the tiny frog jumped right up at him, hit him in the side of his face and tumbled back onto the steps. A little insulted, Deycon leaned in to sniff the little thing and it leapt. I’m not sure who made the longest jump, but my money is on Deycon.

Bear was pretty well known by the local State Police. He would wander the neighborhood and they brought him home so many times, they didn’t even knock anymore; they just opened the door and let him in. Deycon and I visited the barracks to thank them and to let them know Bear was gone. A familiar face met us by the door and the first thing the Trooper said was, “You better keep him inside. He’s NEVER going to fit in the car.” By the time we left Deycon had won them all over with that precious look of his.

 Written by Eileen, Foster Mom in New York.