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The adoption photo of Ty and myself is just that– a picture to mark our official union. Not unlike the first birth photo or wedding snapshot. It’s a place to start. Where we begin.

Ty's adoption photo 3-21-2015

Ty had not been on a leash much and once out in that wide open space of the unfenced front yard, he was ready to bolt–anywhere. I never take super good photos anyway. Ty’s will get much better, as will his manners on and off leash. And I just try to stay behind the camera instead of in front of it.

And the story behind this photo is me struggling mightily to keep control on Ty as he zig zagged at the far end of the leash. Much like a wild animal trying to escape. I was also hoping my many misgivings were not showing on my face. And behind the photographer were several people whistling and waving their arms and calling Ty, all vainly attempting to get his attention. Poor Ty wasn’t buying any of it.

Looking at the photo now, I see his worried expression, his tightly tucked tail, I remember how firmly I gripped the leash and his collar. Even now, I can see and feel him posed for flight.

Our ride home was interesting. We had a three-hour drive. He had to be hoisted bodily into my SUV to the back which was prepared for him. Within the first quarter-mile, he panicked and launched himself across the console, my lap and the floorboards, wedging himself between me and the steering wheel.

Not a good situation. Parking on the side of the road, I dragged myself and then him to the back section of the SUV. I tied his leash to a tie-down hook, giving him just enough leash for his nose to reach me but no more. We stopped once for gas and a pickup parked next to us. As the daddy went in to pay, the little girl, maybe 6 or 7 spotted ‘Lassie’ and leaned over for a closer look. Ty rose up and eyed her through the glass, unsure what to make of his little visitor.

The rest of our ride home was uneventful. I talked to him a lot, and he listened… because he really didn’t have much choice. Arriving home, he immediately went out to the fenced area of the yard and did his business. I was elated as this was where I was hoping he would toilet. So far so good.

Next, inside the house. The resident house cats scattered like crazy when they realized I was not alone. Two peeked around corners. Before I could even get Ty’s leash off, he made a mad scramble across the slick wood floor around the kitchen nook to the corner that would become known as Ty Cave of Comfort. Wedging himself between the wall and cabinet, he made it clear this was where he planned on staying for now.