I’ve noticed in recent weeks a proliferation of fliers taped, nailed and/or tacked to telephone poles along West Lindo Avenue from Holly Avenue to The Esplanade. All seven of the fliers announce a dog has gone missing. I got to wondering whether maybe there is a dog-napping crew operating in north Chico, or whether this many disappeared canines is par for the course. (I grew up on a farm in northeastern Ohio where we kept a pack of three to five dogs at all times. We had only one take off on us—an elderly Airedale named Joe who, we told ourselves, simply ran away to die so as to not burden us with grief. What a good dog.) Riding past these many fliers in recent days had begun to bother me to no end, and I didn’t know what to do about it. All these lost souls (if people have souls, then so do dogs; if dogs don’t, then neither do people) either wandering around confused or in the clutches of some heartless dog-napper. Of course, it could be that these dogs formed a pack and hit the road looking for some adventure, though based on the makeup of this particular group, I sort of doubt it. This week, while watching the morning TV news, my answer of what to do about these dogs gone astray came to me. There was a news clip of a border collie in Florida looking for missing humans in the wake of hurricane Charlie. That’s it, I thought. I’ll return the favor and help find these missing dogs! So I’ve collected their information and present it below, in hopes at least one will be returned home safely. Each flier, with its particular layout and language, is like a work of art; a poem; an ode to a missing friend.
• Our family is looking for our LOST DOG. Her name is Casey—female basset lost in the area of Lindo Channel and Esplanade. Please call us w/any info: 521-3377.” (This yellow flier includes a nice photo of Casey, looking appropriately sad, as basset hounds tend to do.)
• Lost T (Fuzz Butt) and Bo (Biddy). T is wearing a green collar and has a white chest. Bo is wearing a black collar and has Rott markings. Both dogs are female and have tails. Age 9 months. If found please call Jack I at 898-9972.” (In their photos T and Bo are both facing away from the photographer, looking pensively back over their shoulders as if they may be ready to bolt at any moment.)
• Missing beagle. Very loved 2 year old escape artist. Brown and white female dog missing from 3511/2 W. Lindo Ave. No collar. Responds to KC. Please call 321-3242, 521-3377, 345-2433 anytime or 894-0404 weekdays.” (The words “very loved” add a sense of urgency here, like maybe there are some sad kids staring out the window each day for hours on end.)
• Missing Pomeranian. Small brownish/red fluffy dog, who answers to the name Max or Maximus, went missing on 7/20/04. Phone 899-8721. REWARD.” (Back in Ohio, we had a Pomeranian named Sukie; the relationship lasted 17 years. I think in the end she was as glad to be rid of us as we were of her.)
• Have you seen Iggy? (pictured) Please call: 343:8338. Brown color Boston terrier last seen near Ranchaero Airport. Reward!” (The photo says more than the words, here.)
• Lost yellow lab. 7 months old. Riley. Purple and Gold collar says ‘huskies.’ Please call: 895-1620 or 624-1805.
• Lost dog male, Zach