I got this shot of blind Evelyn yesterday on a warm Saturday afternoon, enjoying a shady spot. In the past year Evelyn has lost most of her hearing, though she can still hear certain sounds -- like the click-click-click of the shutter. She didn't know what it was but she could hear "something" out there, which is why she had this alert, almost quizzical expression on her face.
Evelyn was our star who liked to show off for visitors with her amazing ability to play fetch. Few people could understand how a blind dog could play fetch, and Evelyn just loved showing visitors how she does it. We would throw the ball, she would listen intently to hear where it landed, then go bounding after it. Once she knew which direction the ball went, she'd switch to her nose to find it. From that point on she could almost always track it down and retrieve it for us.
Unfortunately, now that her hearing is mostly gone, she can't hear the ball anymore and thus doesn't know where to start. This makes her anxious and confused, because she knows that ball is out there somewhere! This was, quite truthfully, a sad development to witness, because she took such incredible joy in playing fetch.
But it's in the nature of these disabled animals not to let these kinds of setbacks get to them. No, life is all about living, and you pick yourself up and get going again. So now that she can't play fetch any longer, she's settled on a new routine -- tug of war. She'll find a big rubber bone or pull toy and bring it over to us, wave it around, and dare us to grab one end. We'll take hold of it, and then she'll tug and tug on that thing. A new game begins.
Don't forget, you can vote every day for us in The Animal Rescue Site/PetFinder's Shelter Challenge. Enter "Rolling Dog Ranch" and our state postal code, MT for Montana, and it will bring up our listing so you can cast your vote. Invite your family and friends to vote, too!
Wow .. still No. 3! Please keep voting!