Lila was a unique dog, as we lovingly called her the "police" of our house. She always tried to get between us if there was any hugging going on, and certainly let the other dogs know if she did not approve of their behavior. She was always in their business, pushing with her nose and vocalizing her distaste. It eventually led to some fighting, and our need to separate her from one of our other dogs… not a happy situation, and a real learning experience for me as I thought I "knew" dogs.
Through most of my dog-family-life, there had been only one dog at a time. We started taking in rescues sometime before we got Lila, so multiple dogs have been the norm since. I cannot imagine it otherwise. But there is a definite hierarchy with more than one dog - the pack has a clear system, and there can be only be one alpha leader. As the Dog Whisperer says, the human needs to be the alpha leader. I need work on this one.
When he saw her, she was all by herself in a small cage in some back room, destined to be gassed. She fervently talked to him, beaconing him to come closer, so she could nibble on his finger. There was the magic moment between them, and he quickly insisted that she be pulled from this terrible fate. Even though they warned him of her problems - distemper, hip issues and her feisty disposition, he knew she was the one to be saved. I was not entirely happy he made this decision without me, but she warmed my heart in that same instant… and so it was. Looking back, I am quite certain it was she who saved us.
Lila, you were a gift to us and we will miss you dearly.