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🐶 A Puppy Dog Tale🐶 

🐶 Surprise puppy 🐶 

Australian Shepherd puppy dog tale

I returned to our driveway after my evening walk and found a wriggling, happy bundle of friendliness.

“Hello! Where did you come from?”

His warm brown eyes and swishing tail was my only response, and immediately I went from, “I’m not ready to deal with another dog,” to, “Hi, you can be our doggy!” Just like that.

We’d all been discussing getting another dog, but every time the conversation came up, we decided that maybe sometime down the road we’d get a dog, but for now, life was too hectic. A puppy needs training, all sorts of patience, and consistent care. We are spread pretty thin, so we put it off.

Should We Reconsider?

This doggy, though, sat there like he knew what to do. He didn’t jump all over me (big plus), even though he was clearly excited to meet a new friend. Even before climbing our driveway, I was rehearsing names. Freckles, Friendly, Happy. I decided I’d better not put the cart before the horse, so I halted that train of thought.

I am not a dog person. But this one just clicked with me right away, and I imagined companionable walks, just me and my pal.

Little Traitor Puppy

When we reached the top, we found Greg. My pal suddenly became Greg’s pal.


“Thanks, Buddy. Have you no loyalty? I found you first.”

But, no. There he was, climbing all over Greg, acting ridiculously happy, and not at all ashamed at his traitorous wriggles.

Humph. It’s time for me to do some jumping anyway.

I climbed onto the big trampoline and did my thing. Doggy was interested in that, but he couldn’t find a way to join me. Daisy and Babes, our former dogs, used to jump right along with us, and we all had a blast. Greg put the doggy up on the mat with me, but he acted terrified of that. He found his place under the jumping mat, and that’s where he liked to hang out whenever I’d go jump. Sometimes he’d get too close to the middle, and when I jumped, my feet bonked his head a little until he moved over.


With the boys tied up on a church project, and Greg gone working, Doggy and I did become pals right off. He’d hang out under the vehicle or near the house, and join me when I came out. We’d walk to the garden, hike up the hill, or just whatever.

We knew he had to have been someone’s dog. He was too well behaved and friendly to just be a stray. He wasn’t ravenous, he didn’t chase the cats, although he was mighty determined to sniff them. I will say the cats did not show such a welcoming attitude. Suddenly, we had two Halloween cats on display when the doggy showed up. That simmered down his expressions of affection, so he admired them from afar. He seemed to know to keep his distance, yet he persisted in trying to befriend them.

When the boys came home that first evening, I laughed at their initial confusion, then smiles.

“Put a leash on him so he doesn’t run off,” was Adam’s command. “He looks nice, like an Australian Shepherd.” That’s what I thought too.

I Did Try

I asked all of the neighbors that I knew. I sent photos, and they asked more neighbors. No one had seen this dog. I put a notice on our local Facebook page, without a photo, so the owner could describe him to me. I heard nothing. We cautiously thought he might stay.

The next morning, he was still here. We hadn’t heard a peep from him all night, but there he was, smiling and wagging, come morning light.

That’s when we discovered his interest in following cars. He chased the boys down to the road, came back up, then disappeared again. When Greg left for work, the doggy was at the road. He got a ride back up to the top, and stayed with me when Greg left the second time.

We thought maybe he’d get lost chasing a car, and maybe that’s how he came to us. But, on the evening he arrived, no cars traveled our road, and he seemed to have dropped in from the woods onto our driveway. I was walking the dead end of the road, so I knew he didn’t come from there. If he’d have come from the other side of the road, he’d have gotten all kinds of attention (and barks) from all of the neighborhood dogs.

We never heard from anyone claiming him. I settled on the name, Trusty, in my mind, since that described him so well. But I determined to let the guys name him, so I kept that to myself.

Nights Two and Three

Night two, old Trusty became Sir Barks-A-Lot. He found a new place to sleep in the bathroom downstairs.

Night three, Sir BAL decided he did not like that bathroom. Not all alone. He didn’t even like the house, even though all through the day, he waltz right in. At night, he seemed to know that “come on inside to this more muffled room” meant “you’ve been sentenced to the dungeon,” and he found every way in the book to not go in. He got put in, because every faint bark, even way off in the distance turned him into a switchboard operator on a party line. He just had to be a part of every conversation.

So he’s friendly. That just makes sleeping a real challenge. By day, he’s silent and sweet. By night, well, he’s Sir BAL.

Losing his Luster

After the second night of noise, we began the practical conversation about perhaps we really are not ready for a puppy. Greg told me to find him a home, put him on Facebook, do whatever.

I dragged my feet that day, just because I wanted to talk to the boys to see if they could come up with any solutions, like how to keep a scared puppy quiet. I didn’t really know what they’d be able to offer, I just wanted to talk to them since they’d been gone.

Night Four

By night four—Greg and I were in a quandary as to what to try next. Sir BAL already busted out of the bathroom, scratched up the floor in his frenzy, and broke a bowl when he ate Andrew’s cookies. He also tore up some insulation inside the door in his panic to break out of prison. When he was in doing his time, we discovered that he’s actually a blues singer. He ran through quite a few tunes, and plenty of heartfelt howls to make his point.

Also on night four—the boys texted to tell me they were running late. Because they’d stayed over with friends the last two nights, they had not gotten the full experience of Sir BAL in action. He’d be put up inside by the time they got home.

The boys did get back late, well after dark, and I was confused to hear another voice talking outside when they pulled up. We don’t get many visitors, especially after dark. My initial thought is that they’d been followed by an officer.

Visitor After Dark

Greg and I want out to see who it was, and we found a mountain man on a huge ATV—complete with a mounted rifle on the front and cages and coolers strapped on. Suddenly, Sir BAL became Sir Launches Himself Into The Air and BAL! The man and the doggy crashed into each other, tears running down the man’s face. Obviously, he was the owner. How he found us was a real mystery.


It was a real reunion. The man had been searching for three to four days, but he lives over the mountain from us. Literally, up our ridge, down the ridge, and over maybe a mile. As the crow flies, or, as the puppy plods, it’s not far. By road it’s a very long way, because there’s no connecting road.

How in the World?

This man had been driving all over the county, asking about his lost dog. For three plus days! There are tons of roads between his side of the mountain and ours. And he had no way of knowing which way the dog had traveled. I think he said he’d been out in the woods riding, so maybe he at least knew where he’d last seen Clyde. I guess that gave him a clue. But a dog can travel a long ways in three days, plus we have bears, coyotes, and more in these woods.

That evening, as Andrew drove our backroads, he noticed a man waving him down. Mind you, it was after dark, the man had a gun, and, you know all of the cautions that my mind came up with. Still, he stopped. The man asked if he’d seen a dog. I found that encounter so bizarre that I could barely believe it happened.

The guy followed the boys up here, and the sweet reunion is in the scrapbook.

God’s Hand

Only the Lord could have delayed the boys long enough to return home at the moment that the man was driving on that particular backroad. There’s such a tangle of small roads that it’s super slim chances of their paths ever crossing. And not just anyone would have stopped to talk to a mountain man on a giant ATV with a rifle. I probably would have crept on by, but apparently, not my boys.

We made a new friend, said goodbye to Sir BAL, and learned a lot of cool history from our area. The man had many interesting stories to tell us, and we talked for close to two hours out there in the dark.

God is good. He sent us a puppy to love for awhile. But Clyde belongs with his family. The man lives alone, except for his dog family. They are everything to him, and we marvel at the goodness of God to reunite a man with his dog, to protect him along the way, and to give us the chance to meet such a fascinating person.

Ever wonder if you’re important to God? If He will do this for a man and a dog, He has ways of working out the wrinkles in your life too. He’s still the God of miracles.  ♥️ 

If you love puppy stories…

One of my favorite animal story authors is James Herriot.  I’ve read many of his books.  They made a compilation of just dog stories, which is fun.  I think our favorite book of his (which also is a collection) is his Treasury for Children!  It contains so many wonderful and true animal stories!  The dog that came to our place reminded me a smidgen of the dog in Only One Woof!  You can find that story in the James Herriot collections!  

As I was browsing for a link to the above books, I found Diary of a Dumpster Pup, which is a true story of how a cat saved an abandoned puppy.  I’ve downloaded it onto my Kindle to read on our trip today.  It sounds very sweet!  

Do you have any animal stories to tell?  How about miracles you’ve seen, whether they seem small or big?  It’s reassuring to know how much God cares for us all!  

Ridge Haven Homestead Blog, Book of Nature, Family, Homesteading Journey , , , ,

6 Replies

  1. Such a neat experience. A sweet reminder of our Fathers love and care over ALL areas of our lives.

  2. Love this story! It is wonderful to see the hand of God in our daily lives. And maybe He’s hinting that your family needs a doggy… 😉

  3. What a cute pup, I would have kept him too. Glad he was reunited with his family ♥ Thanks so much for linking up at the #UnlimitedLinkParty 125. Pinned.

What is your experience? 💜 I read every comment, and so many times I find that I gain encouragement from what’s shared. ❤️