About 6 months ago we adopted a gorgeous White Shepard mix from the GPSPCA Diesel, not the name I would have chosen, but it was argued (effectively I might add) that if that is the name he has always had, it should be the name he always has. Of course since arriving at our place, he has a variety of nick names. DD, Diesel Dog, Dboy, Sir Hops A Lot. Oh, did I mention he is a Tripawd ?
The SPCA told us that the previous owners paid $1500 to save his life, and were devestated at having to surrender him. I for one, don’t know how or why they could do it – but am thrilled that he has come into our lives! I often wonder what he thinks about as he gazes across the property. Does he have phantom pains? Does he have flashbacks? Exactly how long ago did the accident happen? The story I was told, is that he jumped out of the back of a truck after some cattle. At first I imagined he just broke his leg and it was irreparable – as I thought more about it I have decided that he went under the truck, and as a result the rear right leg and his tail are gone.
It is so cute to see his whole back side wagging in place of a tail. Does he realize he no longer has one? There were a few times I thought he was just being a dirty boy dog, and finally realized he was trying to scratch his right ear. It’s very cool to see how he has adapted, amazing in fact. Does he dream about his former four legged life? Do I spend too much time speculating about a dog’s thoughts? If you know me, you aren’t surprised by my questions.
We have all witnessed dogs running in thier sleep (chasing rabitts), a few woofs or yelps that don’t last long. This morning at about 2am we were ripped from our heavy slumber by two loud, shrill, howls that can only be described as blood curdling. I have never hear anything like if before, and hope to never hear anything like it again. DD was dreaming, or rather having a nightmare – we speculated over lunch that it had to be a bad dream. RC commented that there are some things you can’t forget. So tonight he will get an extra treat, and extra hug and hopefully sleep a dreamless sleep.
Filed under Dogs, Everything
Today I had the pleasure of touring a small group of grade nine students from Buffalo Head Prairie School, in Buffalo Head Prairie Alberta. Ever been there? Ever heard of it? Yes and Yes.
GPRC has a campus in Grande Prairie, and one in Fairview. Grande Prairie is a city of about 50,000 people. The city has the amenities needed and serves a region of about 350,000. Every year about this time, there is an influx of grade nine students from the far north of Alberta coming to town for tours. They usually stop in at the Fairview Campus for a tour of the facility and programs, make their way to GP, where they go to a movie, spend the night at the Super 8. Following day a tour of the college and campus with me, then an hour or so at the climbing gym.
So how many of these grade nine kids have ever been inside the college? A couple. How many have friends or family that have attended or currently attend the college? A few. How many know or have put any thought into what they might like to do after grade 12? About 3. How many have passed by the curvy brick building on their way to Costco with their family? EVERY SINGLE ONE!
Tours like this are easy with a group of disciplined, courteous children. However, they are also complicated. How to engage a grade nine student from a remote rural community? A student that will probably be “first generation post secondary”? A student that really has no plans to finish secondary school let alone pursue a college education or apprenticeship training? Be flexible, be empathatic, be supportive and most of leave your judgement and personal experiences at the door.
It takes all sorts to the make the world go around. And to quote a former student “Douglas Cardinal wanted the brick uneven to show that you don’t have to perfect to go to college”. You get to know your audience over time, and groups like this one take a lot of work. They are shy, don’t ask questions and certainly aren’t ready to share their thoughts or ideas with a total stranger. At the end of my 90 minutes, I know that at least one of them will be applying to the nursing program for fall of 2013. I also know that it is important that they enjoy their youth realize they have options, and understand that they can be and do anything the imagine.