“SERENDIPITY” A Life Out of My Control—Part 6

And now, for those who might have missed my post last year, I’d like to share the story of our neighbor’s husky and Heidi (our big German Shepherd).

In the spring before we opened the first year of camp, Lenette, myself, Heidi, and Brutus ( a smallish beagle) decided to walk our forest to Richardson Creek. We constantly walked our land so we could be as familiar as possible with it all. On this day, I brought with me a large machete.

The forest was dark and beautiful, and our walk was enjoyable. The dogs ran in all directions, checking out every rock and tree. But a real danger was waiting for the dogs. I saw the husky crouched in the forest, so I grabbed Brutus. In that same instant, the husky leaped and tore Brutus from my arms. I picked up my fallen machete and hit him with the flat side of the blade. It bounced off the husky and flew 10 ft away from me.

I looked for a rock or piece of wood to get him to drop Brutus, who was hanging limp in his jaws. That was when Heidi rushed the husky from the side, striking him so hard that he released Brutus. I grabbed Brutus, who was like a limp rag in my hands. I thought he was dead and looked at what was now happening in front of Lenette and me.

The two dogs circled each other, instantly bringing to mind the battle between Buck and the wolfpack leader in “Call of the Wild.” That, of course, was a movie, but this was real, and life or death was intended for one or the other of these two magnificent animals. There wasn’t anything I could do at the moment. It wasn’t possible to get between them or try to hit the husky with a rock or something. All we could do was watch.

The husky lunged at Heidi, but she parried his forward rush and instantly went for his neck. She lifted him off the ground in a single motion and threw him onto the ground with her jaws gripping his neck. It was obvious she was in this fight to kill or be killed. Fearing the worst, I grabbed Heidi’s tail and screamed at her to let go. She hesitated and glanced at me as if to say, “are you sure?” before finally releasing him.

The defeated husky remained on his back, feet in the air. He had given up. We watched as he slowly turned on his stomach and, just as slowly, crawled back into the forest. Heidi watched until the husky was entirely out of sight, alert for any aggressive move. She turned to Brutus, who I was still holding, and licked him. Brutus leaped from my arms and began kissing Heidi in pure joy.

Author: Sy Ogulnick

Sy Ogulnick received a BA from UCLA, Teacher’s Credential from Los Angeles Board of Education and completed phase I (Master’s portion) in a Doctor of Behavioral Science program at California Coast University. Sy leased and operated a summer day camp in LA. He and his wife then purchased virgin wilderness land in Northern CA, where they built and operated a coed summer camp. They moved to Las Vegas, NV, and purchased, built and operated a community children’s program for families staying in a major resort casino in Las Vegas. They have created programs for children nationwide that employed many people and in the process developed successful training programs for personnel. This led Sy to lecture on how to train staff and the creating of community within the workplace. Sy was then invited to speak at professional conferences on how best to hire and train employees, which led to his becoming a consultant in the art of improving relationships in a work environment and eventually to his epiphany that “Leaders are the primary problem and the answer to the personnel issues that arise in the workplace.” Sy has written numerous papers on the subject of interpersonal relationships, leadership and power. He has lectured throughout the United States, has been interviewed by the media and has appeared on many radio and TV talk shows

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