She didn't come from money or class. She was abandoned when she was only 6 weeks old. It was a rainy night, and they left her in the downpour. No wonder she still hates getting wet. She was probably starving; it's no wonder she still fights for food.
We took her in. Oh, we already had two of our own, what's one more? She stole my heart. Flar was determined that we find her a home, but I was already lost to her. The doctors pronounced her healthy and gave her first round of vaccinations. They said she'd grow up to be a big girl. Oh, I put up flyers, even a free ad in the paper, but in a week, it was pretty clear that I had a new puppy of my own: Flood.
When Flood was a puppy, she was smaller than a cat, but the vet told us she'd grow into those paws. No one ever claimed her, but just around the same time, there was an ad for Pit Bull/Beagle mixes in the paper. Critter immediately dubbed her a Bugle, although since then I've gotten more understanding when I use the term Pit Beagle. Maybe she got out in the rain? The boys named her for the high waters the morning after she came to our back door. The creek was out of its banks, so they named her Flood. Sort of an anti-ironic name, since she was completely house-trained in almost no time. She will actually stand and bark at you until you get it into her head that she wants OUT!
Flar has never taken to her. His family has always owned Scotties, and we already had a high spirited pair of them. They were a double handful. They'd never really gotten the idea that their toilet is meant to be outside -- they figured that anywhere private from watching eyes was good enough. They were siblings who had never grown out of the play-fighting of their puppy days. They never settled who was alpha, and when Flood came along, they mostly just made sure she knew she wasn't.
The Scotties taught Flood to fight, and Flood taught the Scotties to bark. Flood is still the more vocal of our two dogs (one of the Scotties passed in 2007). Once she was full grown, the fighting got to be a huge problem. We had to start crating her during meals, to keep her from fighting the Scotties for their food. For a while, we all carried bitters to spray in her face if she started something. Overtime, we learned to anticipate the circumstances that would set her off, and prevent most of the fights.
She's not a huge dog, but by Scotty standards, she's a giant. All skinny legs, she towers over Dizzy, but worse - she's tall enough to put her paws up on the kitchen counter and steal food. I've learned not to leave food out on the kitchen table or counter where she could get to it, but there are occasional slips. Her favorite treat is butter, thus the heavy cover over the dish.
I took her to obedience training when she was still growing, and she learned some commands, but she flunked the class on account of not being able to keep in a down-stay. I didn't keep up with the practice, so she's pretty wild. She loves people though and she'll settle down pretty quickly, as long as she can be in the same room with everyone.
Flar will offer to give her to you. He often jokes about shooting the dog. But, the summer that I took the kids on a train trip to Texas and back, when Flar stayed home to work and take care of the animals, when Flood got out of the fenced backyard and was hit by a car, he was the one who carried her, bleeding and shock-y, to the car. He was the one who drove her to the emergency overnight vet. He was the one who paid for the procedures to save her from the pneumothorax. He fretted about her.
She's my dog, and most of the time I'm the only one she'll obey, but Flar puts up with my little Reprobate because he loves me.
This entry was written for inclusion in The Real LJ Idol writing competition on Live Journal, Topic 8: Reprobate.