When Frodo arrived Zorro came too.
Poor Zorro had been taken into the Turgutreis shelter at two years old and was still there eight years later.
What keeps an animal's spirit up? In a word Volunteers, as there was precious little for him there. He was in a concrete pen with wire door, no blankets or toys allowed as the workers need to hose everyday and these things would get in the way. His outlook was a high white wall. One plus, he had a doggy friend in with him.
So to return to the dedicated volunteers, a couple had been walking Zorro twice a week and each time, in his excitement , he would pee on their boots! He also had a habit of splashing into any water bowl, bucket or puddle he could find. Other than that he was a perfect gentleman- or so they thought.
But on leaving Turkey they promised the old guy they'd do everything to home him.
I had seen an advert for a tripod from Turgutreis who had been there for five years and I successfully found him a home near me, but then I heard about Zorro. He had runny eyes, due to we thought inturned eyelashes, so a simple op would cure that. Surely he deserved a chance at a happy life in his old age.
So it was we set things in motion and the other wonderful volunteers helped by taking him for his injections , bathing him, grooming him and just making him ready for his big day.
Robert and I went across for him, signed the papers and he, without hesitation, jumped into the car and sat in the back with me. Every now and then he'd take a sly peep at me and look as if to say- Well what took YOU so long!!! We transferred him to the shelter Frodo was in where we knew he would have a chance to build himself up by feeding and running around. I also bought them a water tank- full as he continued his hobby of emptying any water utensil he could find.
So we waited for Frodo and Zorro and drove them up to rural Aberdeenshire. Zorro WAS the perfect gentleman they had promised, walking on the lead and never putting a foot wrong.
He was in the chalet with Frodo to recover from his journey, when he sought out the other dogs who were.............excuse me........in the house!!!!! During the day we would stand gazing into the house and started to resent going back to the chalet at night. So he barked unceasingly for a day or two when we thought, poor soul, he would now be ok with the others. So that next night we had him in the conservatory. He barked and barked unceasingly. So the next night he was transferred to the kitchen- lovely and cosy, where he barked unceasingly. The next night he was put in our bedroom in his own blanket and we all slept!!!!! He has never moved out.
When he arrived he decided he was my official guardian and wherever I went he had to go too. Initially this also meant I had no privacy- even in the bathroom. If someone came to the door and got between me and him he would nip the offending person. Oh dear, so instead of running to the door to welcome people I ran to grab Zorro- or Zozz as he began to be called.
You can take the dog from the street but not the street out of the dog !! So began, and still does to this day, a competition between us and him to have food out of reach. I am a retired teacher so I DO have eyes in the back of my head but........Bins were great- oh the mess I have cleared up over the years from the recycling. We just give him the packet now to lick, bite and tear as it saves us putting it in the bin then picking it up again as it has been licked, bitten or torn. He is the only dog we have ever had who has managed to take a cooling, roast chicken out of the slightly ajar oven door and run off with it. He has stolen raw herring and eaten one whole!!! Only to be sick after ten minutes and eat it again!!! If a cat is sick its a race to get there first- me with the mop or Zozz to lick it up- Yum!!!
Bless him. His eyes have cleared up without any op- starvation and hollowed eye sockets were to blame. He had a swollen throat at one point and I was devastated to be told it could be a tumour when after a week he mystified all our vets ( who still speak about the miracle dog) when it cleared up. As a Turkish vet once said, These street dogs are made of stone.
We have wildlife pools and Zozz has his splashing times still. He has realised there is no way he'll ever empty them so runs from one end of the pool to the other splashing with a happy grin on his face. I always say that if he ever has a heart attack it'll be playing and running at the pools with our three year old lab as they both think they are the same age -only ten years between them!!!
Zozz is SO inspirational. For all he suffered he has never looked back. He arrived here and thought- Right folks I've a lot of living to do so we'll get on with it. Bless his heart.