Because a few have inquired about Sazerac’s backstory, I’ll share what I was told by the rescue group I’m adopting him from: he was found living in a wooded area north of Baton Rouge with two other male dogs and one female, all golden retrievers. How long the four dogs had been living on their own in the wild is not known, but Saz was the runt of the group that was led by a protective, savvy female alpha.
The pack was discovered by a farmer who took them in and put an ad in the local paper announcing their discovery. Since it was odd for four goldens to be living in the woods on their own — in addition to the dogs exhibiting some signs of previous domestication — the farmer was sure that the owners were out there somewhere looking for them, but no one ever came forward. They were either abandoned by someone or just treated so shitty that they ran away together in the hopes of finding a better life.
Regardless, it’s painfully apparent that Saz, who is believed to be between 1-2 years old, has so far led a life largely devoid of peace. When he was found his body was riddled with BBs, as if someone with a BB gun had used him for target practice or something. He’s scared of pretty much everything, particularly humans he’s unfamiliar with. When I met him for the first time he tried to run back into his crate to hide and when he wasn’t allowed back into the crate he hid behind his foster owner for quite a while, peeking out from behind her legs occasionally to see if I’d left the room. When he finally did allow me to get close he kept his head down much of the time as if he was scared making eye contact with me might lead to a beating or something.
However, his initial distrust of me eventually faded and soon we were playing fetch with a rope toy (He’s a little clumsy and lumbering and his hilariously big-ass paws sort of flop like flippers when he runs). Later we went for a walk around the neighborhood where he’d get frightened occasionally by the mere sound of my foot cracking a twig I’d stepped on. But the tail that he’d placed firmly between his hind legs upon first seeing me was now wagging vigorously and his potential for becoming a great, loving pet was abundantly evident.
How anyone could mistreat this dog in the way he’s apparently been mistreated is beyond my comprehension. My heart of black ice melted the second I saw his face and looked into his eyes. He’s possibly the sweetest creature I’ve ever encountered. Being in his presence triggers some sort of involuntary “I MUST HUG THIS DOG” response — or at least that’s what he does to me. I simply can’t wrap my brain around how someone evidently looked into these same eyes and felt the opposite of what I feel when I look into them.
But whatever, I’ve been looking to adopt a dog for a some time now but could never seem to find the right one. It’s obvious that Saz and I were just meant to be together — two boys whose early years were spent running around in the swampy woods of south Louisiana. I somehow found my way, now it’s my turn to help him find his.