The first time was early last week. I was driving from one of my schools to another, a route I take pretty frequently because it's the shortest way from point A to point B, but its not the "best" part of town, if you know what I mean. Anyway, as I'm lost in thought about the zillion of things I need to accomplish at the school I'm headed to, a dog came from nowhere and ran across the road, just missed by a car. "Aawww," I said outloud to myself as I immediately felt bad for the obvious stray. But then, my heart dropped as I got a better look at the dog and realized it was a miniature schnauzer. My mom and dad have two and my sister has one. It's amazing how much more empathy you have for an animal that is familiar to you. I couldn't help but think of poor Mia, Tessa, or Sammy out in the cold (COLD!), hungry with no place to go! I pulled into a Wendy's parking lot, got out of my car (almost forgetting to lock it), and trotted after the dog. It's hair was all matted, making it look bigger than a mini schnauzer should. It paused and turned and looked at me when it realized it was being followed by a crazy woman who kept saying, "Come here puppy! It's okay!" After giving me a "Lady, are you crazy?!" look, it kept on trotting. It wasn't afraid of me, it was more like it didn't think it had any reason to stop and see what I wanted. I may have been able to get closer to it if I ran, but I didn't want to scare it away. I continued to follow it for about 4 or so blocks, until it finally got out of my sight. I walked a little longer, in the cold and snow, hands and ears freezing, peering into back yards, looking for the little gray, helpless animal that NEEDED me. No luck. It was in my defeated sigh that I looked around for the first time. Hhmm, this might not have been such a good idea.... I put my head down against the freezing wind that was managing to get through my coat, and walked as fast as I could towards the Wendy's parking lot. I made it there just fine, no one abducted me or anything. I didn't even see anybody. Once I got to Wendy's, one of the employees stopped me and asked me if that was my dog. I told her it wasn't, but I thought I might rescue it if I could catch it. She confirmed that it was a stray and they see it from time to time. When I offered to leave my name and number in case anyone was able to catch it, she looked at me as though I had lost my mind and said, "Honey, no one in here is gonna try to catch that dog!" Yeah, I was crazy!
Anyway, I do plan to drive around there from time to time to see if I can see the poor thing and lure him/her to my car. If you know of anyone interested in a free mini schnauzer, let me know. They're great family dogs, great with kids, don't shed, and hypoallergenic.