Lagniappe may be a bit off his game these days, but he sure hasn't stopped playing it.
Today I went over to my neighbor's house to help him fix something that he broke right after I sold it to him. While I was over there, Lagniappe decided that he also wanted to be over there so he knocked the baby gate off my deck stairs and came over to join us.
As I was taking him back home though, he saw one of my neighbor's many cats and took off after it. This of course started a frenzy of cat-chasing all around the neighbor's house since they have literally dozens of feral cats in their yard that they feed. For a few minutes, Lagniappe was back in his element, chasing cat after cat up various trees. Then suddenly, he was gone.
Where'd he go? I called a few times, but he didn't come. I listened, but I couldn't hear him pounding through the woods like he does when he's on one of his "cat reduction" missions.
Then I heard a voice from up the hill shout: "Hey! Whoever's dog this is, he's in my HOUSE!"
I grabbed my keys and drove up around the block. I knew which house it was going to be because up until last year, the guy who used to rent there had another German Shepherd and Lagniappe used to go up there frequently to play with him. But that guy had moved out, and the house had been vacant until just recently. I hadn't met the new tenant yet, but thanks to Lagniappe, today was the day for that.
When I got up there, I met a rather nervous fellow named Blaine, who was, as is typical for this area, slightly inebriated. As I was introducing myself to him, Lagniappe came out of the open basement door of his house and trotted up to me. I opened the back of my SUV and told him to get in and he did, naturally with that smug look on his face that said: "yell at me or beat me if you want to, because I had so much fun that it was worth it." I just sighed and closed the tailgate on him.
According to Blaine, he was just sitting on his patio, minding his own business and having a beer, when Lagniappe burst out of the brush and just ran right past him and into the open door of his house. Not knowing Lagniappe, he was afraid to go in and confront him, and Lagniappe wasn't all too interested in coming back out until I showed up, probably because he was looking for his old buddy who had always been in there before. I explained things as best I could and hopefully smoothed the situation over, but believe me, this is not the best way to meet the new neighbors, even in West Virginia.
Lagniappe, for his part, remained smug until we got home, at which point he went up the stairs, emptied his water bowl, then headed for his dog bed, happy as a clam.