When driving up to D.R.'s house, a visitor might get a tad nervous. A car is usually met by what looks like an escaped lion with a short, curled tail. No need to call the circus, zoo or Fish and Game. Think Clarence the Cross-eyed lion. Not that Cisco really is a lion. He is a red Chow that has been shaved for the summer; except for his head and upper neck. The underwool that is growing back in is blond to give him the look of lionhood.
Most people get nervous about a large dog even if it doesn't resemble a lion. But Cisco greets every visitor as someone else to love him with scritching. He is a gentle giant. D.R. and family treat Cisco and the other pets as members of the family.
Think about sharing a bed with a Chow. He thinks a king size bed is big enough for everyone. But when he gets to sleep, he rolls and stretches out. One morning I arrived and the lady's legs were hanging off the bed where Cisco had pushed her. The lady has MS so she couldn't get her legs up or push him away.
Poor lady. She is used as a cushion and a pillow by her pets. But they keep her warm and protected. Especially Sweetie. Sweetie is a Keeshond who used to belong to a neighbor. One day Sweetie was prowling the neighborhood (5 acre lots in the country) when she spotted the lady in her electric scooter. From then on she was there every day. The lady was always calling the owners to tell them where the dog was. Finally one day, they just gave the dog to her. Sweetie chose her own home.
When I arrive of a morning, Sweetie meets me at the door bounding forward and back like Lassie saying come on. She leads me to the back bedroom to deliver me to the lady. Only then will she go outside to do her business and then right back in.
Sweetie is good friends with Nike, a longhair tuxedo cat with the most gorgeous white whiskers. He is very dignified in his shiny black tux. He has been with the lady a long time. He barely tolerates the scruffy looking teenager named Reebok.
Reebock is a shaggy, lanky DLH that is black with brownish and grayish patches. He is scruffy looking. But he is a love and a riot. The lady says, "He cracks me up with his antics". He has springs in his legs, pouncing and leaping and running. The whole world is a playground to him.
One day I opened the door to let Sweetie out and Reebok came flying across the room, leaped over Sweetie as she started to step out, and then bounced off Cisco's face! But Cisco didn't even blink; he and Reebok are best friends. They prowl the neighborhood together. Everybody knows them. Other dogs that show an interest in Reebok are met by Cisco. Reebok is utterly safe in Cisco's company. It is so funny seeing them walking off together; small black cat and big red chow.
The nurse who comes to do nursing things for the lady often has to move Reebok's tail or Sweetie or the other pets. They are curious and protective. Sweetie usually accompanies the electric cart wherever the lady goes in the house or yard. What a wonderful, loving relationship.