This is Tiger. Tiger is a toy poodle. Tiger's new nickname is "The Wanderer," like that old Dino and the Belmonts song. "He's the kind of dog that likes to roam around . . . he's a wanderer, he's a wanderer, he roams around around around!"
Tiger decided he wanted an adventure early this morning, I guess. He whined to go out at midnight or so. In my half-asleep stupor I let him out without chaining him up (we live on a corner lot in a town home complex, so no fenced-in yard). Usually he does his business and comes back to the house with a name call and a whistle. Not so this time. In waiting for him to show up at the door and whine, I fell asleep. He wasn't home at 2, or at 3. By 4 my overactive imagination was running laps around my brain, and I was afraid for him. I put on my fleece, leashed the other dog, grabbed my flashlight, and headed out to find him. No luck. By 5:30 I called my husband, who is out of town, and cried on the phone that I'd lost the dog. At 6:45 my youngest and I headed out to look for him in the car, while the oldest was home to answer the phone.
At 7:45 we got a phone call, "Are you missing a little dog?" He had wandered around two miles from our house! This toy poodle is 12 1/2 years old! He has arthritis and floating kneecaps! He is a priss about his feet, and he has cataracts in one of his eyes!
But he's fine. He picked up a flea (first flea I've seen in the almost-four years we've lived in North Dakota, I might add) and some burrs, but after a quick trip to the vet, he is fine. We Frontlined him and the other dog so they won't breed fleas (although the one I found is dead at the vet's office).
He's just a wanderer. Who will never go outside alone again.