Thursday, December 30, 2010

Chihuahua Stowaway

Dad wrote this on his blog. I've been away for some time from blogging as I have been exploring Buffalo. You know, wings, beef on weck, good trees, parks to run in, snow. All that. I may start up again. We'll see.

Forgive me Father, for I have sinned.

So I finally got home after a 9 hour train ride. It was a nice ride albeit long. We had flown down to NYC but our return was cancelled, so we had a decision to make. We had paid a bit extra to fly Haze, our dog, down on the flight in his airplane approved carrier, which goes under my seat. He's such a good dog, not one bark or yelp. He just sleeps the whole flight without any tranquilizers or anything. My father really loves the dog, so I wanted to bring him there to see him

But now, we had to think about how to get home with a dog and while some trains allow dogs in carriers, others do not.

Now I didn't want to drive. I'm a new driver and didn't feel confident with driving in the city to get to the thruway. It was dangerous on the roads and quite a mess and often there are serious icy conditions on the highway up around Syracuse or Rochester in general. I could've waited to fly a few extra days, but then I'd have to pay additional hotel fees (since we stayed at the Westchester Marriott in Tarrytown) that I can't afford.

Now I usually follow rules and regulations. And I take directives that restrict animals from certain places very seriously. But we needed to get home. So....we decided to make Haze our Chihuahua stowaway. I was hoping we wouldn't get caught because I didn't want to have to hitchhike home from Schenectedy. We got on the train very early and got into our seats with Haze's carrier on my lap. Amazingly for the first 6 hours, he didn't stir or make a peep. We had fed and walked him just before we took off so as to create an optimal condition for his travel. He's only 9 pounds, so he only eats a quarter cup of kibble twice a day and gets walked three times a day.

He gave a small "yip" at one point. I stuck my hand in the carrier and began to pet him. That was what he wanted. For nearly an hour I did that. Head scratches, belly rubs, neck strokes. Whatever would keep him calm. 7 hours down.

Then one of the times I wanted to make sure he was OK, he wiggled his head out of the carrier. I thought we were doomed. The lady behind us saw him. Oh no!

"Oh he's so cute! He wants to get out!"

Marion whispered, "No! Don't say anything. Don't say anything."

The lady was hip to our jive and said "Oh OK, I get it, I get it."

Whew! I quickly got him re-situated and then he calmly went back inside and rested quietly. A couple of doggie treats went a long way.

I thought he was getting a bit warm so I snuck into the bathroom and removed his doggie sweater. That kept him cool. We stood there a bit longer than usual to get some air and then back to our seats. 8 hours down. I gave him his second meal at that point and we had been giving him some small amounts of water every once in awhile in his carrier. A content dog. When we arrived at our destination, I got him out of his carrier and walked towards Fr. Jack's truck (it's awesome when people pick you up after travel!). I let him walk a bit and pee. We drove home and took a nice walk and he finished up. He snuggled up next to me on the couch after that. There's no place like home. We had an absorbent dog bed in his carrier but it wasn't needed. Good dog!

Regardless, I know people had it much worse than we did. I hope everyone got home safe and sound. Here's a quick pic of the snow in New York City.

Sunday, January 10, 2010


Clearly I was the good luck charm! Believe in the power of the doggy jersey!