This entry begins with a sensational gift. My Binky was 10 months old and starting to stand and wobble around so my parents thought it was the perfect time for a walker. They brought over a colorful Winnie the Pooh spaceship with wheels that glowed with the promise of fun and progress. The Binky was thrilled! She started out slow and after a few hours dominated our apartment with speed as she zipped around and explored. Every person was beyond entertained and thought it was adorable how she handled herself in this gadget. If it would have been that only people constituted our family, this story would never be, but we are a family where our feline and canine members have always been just as important as the humans. That being said, I should have noticed that they weren’t impressed with the Binky’s new toy.
One day, she started chasing my 95-pound lab Guapo until he was cornered. As she kept trying to reach him, she proceeded to hit him while he was stuck against a wall and the inevitable happened… He bit her! He bit her right on her cheek, right in front of me and it all happened too quickly for me to prevent it. One of the loves of my life struck out at the most precious life that I have ever known. Rage, betrayal, fear, sadness, and panic rushed through my body all at once. I checked on my crying baby and her cheek was tainted with bloody marks left by my dog’s loss of control. Never had I felt the urge to kill until this point in my life. I glared at my dog of 6 years and hatred scorched him through my eyes. How could he?!? I called his trainer and told him that if he didn’t come pick him up, I would take him to be put down. Needless to say, he arrived within minutes.
When Emperor King Chark looked at his little girl and assessed what happened, he stepped in and prevented me from having Guapo euthanized. When the trainer arrived, he did the same. One by one, friends and family would come over to see my little Binky and her cheek and the verdict was unanimous: he didn’t attack her, he reacted like the animal he is and pushed her away the only way he knew how. I could not bring myself to understand how these people were so blind. In my opinion, the damage was too great to deserve an explanation. Interestingly enough, my Binky got near him after it all happened and, to my terror, hugged him. I trembled as I watched this paradoxical moment that my husband was orchestrating to build her confidence back up and cried. He was taken away and I tended to my daughters raw wounds and my broken spirit.
With time, my Binky’s face healed yet my heart grew heavier. Our house was empty and everyone in it was grieving, including the two cats. If she could forgive him after minutes of the incident, what was it going to take for me to do the same? My mind told me it wasn’t responsible. If it happened again, it would be my fault for allowing him back. But then again, if he would have wanted to attack her, he easily could have killed my 10 month old with his strength and his size. It took three months for everyone around me to convince me to give him another chance. He came back to my house a different dog; humbled, knowing that the reason he had been outcasted had cost him my trust. For the first three months he wore a muzzle in the house. Then, slowly, my nerves settled with his display of understanding. With all our gumption, my husband and I worked hard at establishing order through hierarchy.
Now, a year later, I look back at this horrific experience and thank my lucky stars for the key people in my life that lifted the curtain of anger from my heart and brought out reason to understand that without structure, there can never be an integrated family. Discipline and enforcing order is a difficult task. However, hard work and understanding the ranks is the key to creating a harmonious home. Luckily, we are all happy together after this tough lesson reset our vision of what it means to be a parent. Guapo will turn 8 this December and he and the Binky love their walks together that they continue to share everyday under our supervision.