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Rosie Coyote: Preview

he first time we saw Rosie, Rikki and I were driving up Kirkwood one night at dusk she suddenly turned and said, ”Did you see that?”

I was paying attention to driving and hadn’t seen anything.

“See what?”

“I’m not sure. I think it was a dog next to a car back there.”

The only thought I had was ‘I sure hope it’s not a lost dog.’ If it were a lost dog, we would probably be spending the night trying to catch it and return it to its owner. I hadn’t the foggiest idea that ghostly figure Rikki had spotted would change our lives.

Several weeks passed and I hadn’t thought of the incident until I was taking my dog Eliza Doolittle for her evening walk - which inevitably followed her evening ride around the hill. Our neighbors called it “driving Miss Eliza” because I had to drive her around the hill at least two times a day – Eliza demanded it. They would have called me crazy but they treated their dogs the same way. Everybody in the canyon loved their dogs.

We were about a hundred feet from the house. Our neighbor Manny was also walking his dog Lola, a Great Pyrenees.They were about a hundred feet beyond my house.

Standing stock still between at the top of the stairs going down to my garden was the strangest looking animal I had ever seen. I immediately thought of the animal Rikki had seen driving up Kirkwood.

It was small, dark gray and appeared to be hairless. It might have been a dog but I couldn’t be sure as it was dusk and the animal seemed to be fading in and out of view like a ghost. It stopped, turned its head, stared directly at Eliza and me for ten seconds then silently glided down the stairs into our garden.

It was the saddest looking creature I had ever seen.

Eliza didn’t even blink, which was strange because she tends to be very aggressive towards other dogs. Lola did the same thing - nothing.

I couldn’t get its face out of my mind. I had never seen anything like it. It was very slender and had large ears. It looked like Yoda in Star Wars but much sadder.

I brought Eliza into the house and told Rikki about the strange looking dog I had just seen going down the steps to the garden. Rikki is the sort of person who is physically incapable of not helping a creature in distress – whether its animal or human.

She immediately ran outside to see if she could find it because it might have been a lost dog. Lost dogs seemed to gravitate to our house. We had returned many of them to their owners. If we couldn’t find the owner we usually ended up keeping them.

There was no sign of the creature. We didn’t see it again for several weeks. I almost put it out of my mind, but not quite. That face would come me to as I drove up the street. I couldn’t help looking for it whenever I was driving home. It was like looking for a ghost you knew needed your help but there was nothing you could do.

I hadn’t thought about it for several days when Rikki came running in and said it was in a neighbor’s yard down the street.

“It’s the same animal I saw on Kirkwood! Get a paper plate and some dog food it looks like it’s starving. It’s in David’s yard. Quick!”

I got a paper plate while Rikki opened a can of dog food. She grabbed the plate and dog food and ran out of the house. I followed her down the street to our neighbor’s house on the corner.

There it was - a small gray figure standing behind the shrubbery surrounding the yard. It looked so forlorn you wanted to pick it up and hug it. It had a large open wound on its flank. Every once and a while it turned its head and chewed on its side like it was scratching a terrible itch. It was heart breaking but there was a strange calmness about the creature. It didn’t act like a dog - or a coyote.

Rikki put the plate with the food down in the yard about thirty feet from the animal and walked back to where I was standing quietly.

By this time three or four other neighbors a gathered to watch. No one spoke. The animal stood back for a few moments then carefully approached the food on the plate. It ate all the food quickly then moved back to its original position. It stood there looking at us for five or ten minutes then turned and glided down the hill.

Everyone stood there silently for a while then the discussion began. What was it? Some thought it was a dog. Some thought it was a coyote. Some thought it was a hybrid coyote-dog mix. Some thought it might be a strange breed of hairless dog up from Mexico.

After that, it was seen with some regularity on our street. Every one who saw it said it was looking more emaciated every time it was seen. We hadn’t seen it for a week or so but it was always in the back of our minds. It was that kind of animal. There was something special about it. You couldn’t put your finger on it but there it was.

Then, on the twenty second of July we received an e-mail accompanied by a photo from our neighbor down the street who told us that the animal had been sleeping on a chaise lounge in his carport. The e-mail said:

July 22, 2009 7:21:41 AM PDT
Check out this scrawny coyote that lives in our canyon. Lost all its hair or something. Sacha saw it first a few weeks ago. Today was the first time I saw it. Walking on yucca Trail. She wasn’t sure what it was. In Mexico, they call it a chupacabra.

I passed the photo along to some of my neighbors who had seen the animal and wanted to help it in any way they could.

I sent this e-mail to my neighbor to see if we could come up with something to help our mystery animal. Almost everyone on our street wanted to do something to help.

From: Skip Sent: Thursday, August 20, 2009 11:34 AM To: HB Subject: Re strange animal

Hi H- Let me know when you might be available to speak on the phone re our orphan animal. I had our animal communicator contact it and ensuing conversation was quite amazing. A little too involved for e-mail. Attached is photo of “Black dog” - an experiment gone “awry” according to the animal itself. All the best Skip

From: HB Subject: RE: Re strange animal Date: August 20, 2009 11:42:19 AM PDT To: Skip

Poor thing.  Are you kidding?  I am so slammed, I don’t have a second for anything, but this is so fascinating.  Let’s talk!  Call me at the number below, please, or send me the number I should call. Thanks Skip!

As soon as we got the photo I contacted an animal communicator I work with. I own a record company called the Laurel Canyon Animal Company. We create music exclusively about, for and with animals and sometimes employ the services of intuitive animal communicators so anytime some problem comes up with an animal one of my first actions is to contact a communicator and see if they can shed some light on the situation. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t.

I sent the communicator the photo and asked her if she could contact the animal and tell it to come into our garden where we would put out food and water and give it shelter. She agreed to do so and told us she had told the animal our request and said we should try putting out food and water at dusk every day for a week.

I took photos of the stairs leading to our garden and sent them to the communicator to transmit to the animal in the hope that it would recognize the stairs as I had seen it go down them previously.

Well, actually she had to say the food would be out during the time the sun set behind the hills and the time it got dark because animals don’t have watches.

She came back and said that the animal told her that all the houses in our neighborhood had stairs going down the hill – which is true. She also told me it told her it called itself a black dog.

This will take a little explanation but I think it’s worth the diversion. As I stated previously, I own a record label that utilizes the services of animal communicators so any time something comes up that is animal related I ask them to ask the animals whenever it’s feasible.

The last project we had worked on with our communicator was a CD called “Songs To Make Dogs Happy”. We had our communicator conduct canine focus groups selected from over 250 dogs nationwide to ascertain their preferences in music and content. The dogs’ responses were then used as guides for the music. We held out final focus group here in Los Angeles.

Our communicator stayed at my house over the weekend the focus group was conducted. At one point I asked her if she would come down to the Canyon Country Store and talk to “Black Dog” or “Blackie” as he was known.



Blackie was a dog that belonged to one of our neighbors who lived in the old Jim Morrison House In Crier Court next to the Country Store. Blackie spent his days as kind of a greeter at the Country Store – he was there every day for years – everyone in the canyon who went to the Country Store – and that was everyone, knew him. I wanted to find out what he was about and our communicator was the chance to do so.

This was years ago so all I remembered was our communicator coming back and saying Blackie said he was going away but he’d be back no matter what.

He died two weeks later. The dog loved the canyon more than any other person or dog I ever met. I forgot about this until I sent the photo of our mystery animal to the communicator. When she told me that the animal called itself a black dog it sent shivers down my spine. I had to remind her of what she had told me Blackie told her years ago – that he’d be back.

I didn’t know what it meant but it certainly gave you chills, especially when you looked at the large painting of Blackie on the front wall of the Canyon Country Store – it was a dead ringer for our mystery “dog”.

Everyone began calling our animal “Black Dog”. Rikki spent the next week in our library looking out the window overlooking the garden where we had placed the food and water waiting for the animal. She never saw our “Black Dog” but she did see three or four coyotes and a family of raccoons.

We were a little of depressed, as we had hoped we might be able to get our “Black Dog” used to coming into our garden enough to be able to trap it – although we had no idea what was involved in actually trapping something - but we would learn.

We didn’t see it again for several weeks, but during that time the photo and our communicator’s message circulated through the neighborhood.

One of my neighbors told an attorney he worked with who was an animal activist about our animal. The woman put me in contact with another animal communicator who contacted the animal via the same photo.

August 24, 2009 2:55:16 PM PDT
I talked to my friend Dana, who is the animal communicator that trained with Carol Gurney. She said it seemed like a downtrodden homeless person but almost prideful about not needing help from humans.  She felt that it was sort of conflicted, though - like it wanted help, but didn’t want it at the same time.  I asked her to let it know that we wanted to help it and at least provide it with food/water. 

In describing itself it said “I am nothing; I am nobody”.  Who knows what all of this means, but I’ve been dying to know whether it ate any of the food that was left out for it!  Lee

On the same day I sent several e-mails to another communicator I know who lives here in California. I included the photo and asked her if she would communicate with Black Dog for me.

On Aug 24, 2009, at 3:21 PM, Skip wrote:
Hi Paula Just wondering if you managed to contact the animal in the photo I sent. Other than that things are going well - will contact you as soon as we begin the programming. Hope everything is well with you and the book. All the best Skip

On Aug 24, 2009, at 5:55 PM, Skip wrote:
Hi Paula I’m not sure if the animal is even still alive. It’s kind of a community thing. If it’s a problem let me know. This is just to try and help a suffering animal - no guardians involved just an animal in distress. Everyone just wants to help it. Thanks Skip

The next day I received this e-mail, which I passed along to all the people in the canyon who were interested in our mystery animal. By now the list had grown to almost thirty people. More and more people in the neighborhood wanted to know about our visitor and had asked to be kept in the loop. Our animal was attracting attention and seemed to be bringing out the compassion in people.

From: Skip Sent: Tuesday, August 25, 2009 9:36 AM Subject: Fwd: Re dog photo
Hi all, This is the message I received from Paula about our mystery dog. Animal communication is sometimes a two edged sword in that you learn stuff you’d rather not know. Anyway, this is it - I hope we can help the little guy out. I’ll let you know if I hear anything else. Sometimes you forget just how good you have it. Skip

The Message On Aug 25, 2009 8:14:41 AM PDT Hi Skip, The animal is still alive...just traveling and hungry. Here’s what I got this AM...hope this helps all...poor little guy...it is very frightened.

There is a group in Sherman Oaks /Studio City area called All the same, Wild and Tame that may be able to give you some pointers...they rescue very ill and abused animals. Run by two nice women...check them out...on Ventura Blvd. by the shop that sells and consigns hand made art and items.

Q: Will you communicate with me?
A: I am alone, I am looking for food, I am traveling now - I am lonely, alone - traveling - always traveling, hiding - people, animals try to hurt me.

Q: Do you have a name, do you belong to someone?
A: No one - no one wants me, my name was “the dog” - get rid of the dog - dump the dog - been alone for a long time - now others are not with me - others are dead - others like me are dead - died - I am alone.

Q: What happened to you?
A: I belonged to a family - then another dog came - made me sick - I look like this because of the other dog - they killed the other dog and left me out in the hills - here I am - close to my home - but stay in the hills - get water, drink eat from others food and garbage - eat left overs from other dogs.

Q: Do you know any people, are you used to people?
A: People kill dogs like me - I am ugly - I am diseased, my skin hurts - I hide during the night - come out at early I used to be a brown dog - now I am ugly - skin itches badly - I am alone - I have no people now - alone - sick - sad.

Q: Would you like a home with people?
A: Don’t know - they don’t like me - they are scared by me - chase me away - so I run - I don’t mean harm - but I think people would kill me - I am diseased - nothing wants to be with me - how could this happen - people hurt me - I am afraid of people.

Q: Do you WANT to be with a person?
A: I want to be safe - have a safe place, lots of food, be able to rest, safe place, shelter - I would want to be outside not inside, have shelter outside, food, safe place to be - get well - don’t know, I am sad.

Q: OK, I will tell Skip - If he or someone wants to help you with your fur/skin, it would have to be with them touching you and treating you - could you let yourself be caught so someone could help you?
A: I am afraid, I would have to see and make sure it is safe to be touched - people throw things at me - I hide - I am not wanted - so I hide.

Q: I will tell Skip, please, if a person offers you food and shelter, don’t be afraid - let them help you OK? They would have to treat your whole body with lotions etc. - If you would let them - can you do this?
A: I would be afraid - terrified they would kill me - very afraid, sad!

Q: I will tell Skip. He is a nice person - try to accept his help OK?
A: I am traveling, always traveling, and hungry, no one wants me.

There you go...and off I go up North!  Have a great day and be sure to send some good thoughts to this little creature, Paula

This, of course, made everyone depressed and want to help the animal even more. It also was passed around and even more people became involved because it was as fascinating as it was heartbreaking. . .





copyright © 2010 Skip Haynes