Story over a Cup: My dog must channel the spirit of Houdini

Published 3:28 pm Sunday, June 23, 2019

Michael Cole

Anyone that has owned a dog, or been owned by a dog can attest to one fact: certain dogs are natural born escape artists.

Anyone that has seen my dog, Bill, in action knows this to be true.

We originally put the boys out on tie down chains. He figured out how to pull himself out of the harness.

So, we built a small fence enclosing in the carport and a little more land for them to run around and still be kept in the yard. Within the first week, Bill got out almost daily. He would find that weakness in the fence and crawl out under.

Whether he has to use his teeth to bend a section of the fence to push or dig, he was doing it.

So, it became a sort of a game between him and I.

I would fix the section of the fence he had broken only to find out that within a few hours that he had gotten out some other way.

In exasperation, I decided to build a new fence that was tighter, bigger, and more importantly, Bill escape proof.

With material lists in hand, I was off to Tractor Supply for the posts, the hammer to put them in the ground and 100 feet of wired fencing.

I figured if these fences could keep in cows, then a 60-pound dog that stood about three feet high had met his match.

After two days of driving in posts, pulling the fence as tight as it could be, it was ready.

I gave a triumphant grin while I opened the kitchen door and four pairs of legs took off for the outside.

It looked like it worked. Bill ran pole to pole, trying out all of his past escape points, finding them now unable to be used.

I was vindicated.

Then the rain came. After a couple of days of thunderstorms, the pole closest to the house had gotten lose with the mud.

Bill figured it out and used is body weight to push it forward enough to get out.

I appreciate the exercise I get when I chase Bill around the neighborhood. However, I do not want that health to come with a heart attack. So, off I went to fix that area.

A few minutes of moving the pole just enough to be too close to the house for him to push, reinforced by paving stones around the base of the fence wherever it looks like mud could weaken the fence and I was satisfied that my Houdini could not get out again.

So here I sit at my computer, typing this story of triumph over my furry Houdini…

And there Bill goes, out of the fence and across the street to chase his rooster friend, Fred.


Michael Cole is a syndicated columnist that when he is not writing, he is plotting global domination. You can follow him at