View Full Version : Zeek

07-18-2007, 11:18 AM

For those who have read my stories of Tasha, I submit the story of my Zeek, who was a Kelpie/Blue Heeler cross born on the ranch I worked and lived at so many years ago. Zeek was a son of Otis, the little blue from my story ?Before Tasha Was Mine? and was born within days of the terrible dogfight that I detailed in that story.

Zeek was a standout in his litter of pups, because he was the only black and tan colored puppy born from his blue ACD mama and his solid-black Kelpie papa. He was the biggest and most robust pup in his litter from Day One, and I tried to put dibs on him, only to learn that Ben (the head trainer who owned the bitch), had promised this pup to his current girlfriend, a spoiled little cowgirl we knew as Andi.

The pups grew up, cute little butterballs that were allowed to wander everywhere at will, underfoot all the time?it drove me nuts to see the tiny babies around the horses and the hubbub of the busy stable! But somehow they all survived and were sold off one by one until only Zeek remained. The show season arrived and with it, the distraction and stress of getting ready, and one day Ben was backing his horse trailer out - and sure enough, he ran over little Zeek.

I came home from working at my Day Job and Ben came up to my apartment above the stables to ask me to look after his dogs while he was away on the Show Circuit, and he told me that little Zeek had been hit that day. He took me over to his trailer to show me how to care for the pup: when I got inside I was appalled at what I saw. There, on the floor just inside the door, was a tarp?and on this tarp was the ten-week old Zeek, who had been bandaged up inexpertly around his back leg and pelvis, and was lashed to a contraption that Ben had built for him which can only be described as a wooden mini-sawhorse.

?Now y?see, Miss Shirley,? Ben was saying, ?You just take this here frame that he?s on, and you just take him outside and stand it up like this, and then he can do his business like that!? He was demonstrating this awful procedure to me as the poor puppy cried in pain. Within seconds after Ben?s hasty departure with his horse trailer I had that puppy in my car speeding to the Vet.

Andi, meanwhile, had been so upset that Ben ?broke her puppy? that she didn?t even want the little fellow anymore.

I had Zeek x-rayed, and they had to surgically implant a steel pin in him to hold his shattered little pelvis together. They set his little leg as best they could and the rest was up to Mother Nature. I took him home with me and that was that! Zeek was MY puppy now. When Ben returned from the show circuit, he came looking for the pup.

?Now Miss Shirley,? Ben stood on my doorstep with his hat in his hands. ?Now I see the little black pup in?t there. Did he not make it??
Little Zeek waddled his way out from behind me to see Ben, his docked tail wagging.
?Will ya looky there!? said Ben, ?He?s doin? great! Well, now, I?ll just take him on home with me, then!?
?No, you won?t.? said I, ?You don?t get him back, sorry, Ben! Even if you paid me eight times the cost of the vet bill I paid to put him back together, you could not buy him off of me.?

Ben was dumbfounded when I also turned down his fee that he wished to charge me to purchase the pup from him, and went on his way, hat still in his hands and tail between his legs.

Zeek grew into one of the finest dogs I ever owned, one of the most loyal and loving dogs you?d ever want to meet. He always had a bit of a hitch in his get-along, but he was amazing in his ability to run and play and get around. Zeek lived a full long life of thirteen wonderful years and was Tasha?s friend and partner in crime! In the final two years of his life Zeek finally became paralysed in his back legs and I had a doggy wheelchair for him. I?d put him in that thing and he?d be hell on wheels! Oh, how the cats would run when they saw me get his wheelchair for him! Interestingly, even in spite of his malady Zeek was accepted and recognized by my other dogs as Alpha, and they would always defer to him and come to him to show submission in an elaborate display of doggy politeness. Zeek was a Prince among dogs and loved by all who knew him, whether human or canine. Cats, however, were quite another story!
Caring for a paralysed dog is sometimes a difficult chore, but I would do it all again in a heartbeat to have my old friend back with me again.
Here are two pictures of my old friend. The first was taken when Zeek was about six months old; the second shows him in his little wheelchair.


07-18-2007, 11:28 AM
What a lucky boy to have such a loving and feisty momma! Thank you for sharing such a great story!

07-18-2007, 11:29 AM
Shirley - just what I needed to start my day off right. What an inspirational story and dog! Thank you for sharing.

:) Brooke

07-18-2007, 10:33 PM
Wow what a great story! he was a cute little guy..thanks for shareing :)

07-18-2007, 10:52 PM
What a handsome boy Zeek was! And how lucky you both were to have one another. I love reading your dog stories, you really are a gifted writer.

08-07-2007, 06:21 PM
Boy I swear, in every story I feel like I am right there with you. You have incredible talent with words, and MUCH MUCH more. Zeek sounded like an incredible companion. Thank you so much for sharing.

08-10-2007, 12:10 PM
Awww! You made me cry again! I love your stories-you definitely have a way with words. And I so admire your spirit. What a handsome dog Zeek was.