Addicted to Cocoa? Us Too. 6 Reasons We Just Can’t Stop
1. He is a handsome boy, at least, that’s what the ladies say.
2. He is gregarious by nature, every two or four-legged creature for miles around know him.
3. He loves adventure; a morning walkabout is a must. Don’t worry. He always comes back. It is just the way he rolls.
4. He has discriminating tastes. Balls, frisbees, or chickens are not to his liking. No, rabbits, squirrels, and an occasional bear are much more fun.
5. He doesn’t bark much, but when he does, you should pay attention.
6. He requires a lot of rest, and he especially likes NOT to share a soft bed and pillow.
Dumb Friends League
I drove to Pagosa Springs Colorado, which is a four or five-hour trip, to secure Cocoa’s prison release. However, as I traveled further west the weather conditions deteriorated. By the time I started up Wolf Creek Pass, a full-blown blizzard had developed (later that day, the pass was closed). Fortunately, I could see, barely, the trailer lights of a tractor-trailer in front of me, and followed him up and down the pass. Because of the weather delay, I spent the night in Pagosa Springs and would pick up Cocoa in the morning.
I picked up Cocoa at the Dumb Friends League the next morning. He had been in jail for some time and was excited to be released finally. The manager mentioned he was a Doberman and German Shepherd mix and about two years old. After paying a modest sum for his release, we were off, headed back to his new home.
Adjusting to His New Home
The first full day Cocoa was home, I let him out early in the morning and didn’t see him until around noon. He likes to run. One day I was changing clothes, and to my surprise, a lady walked into the Cabin unannounced, with Cocoa on a leash. She politely asked me to please keep my dog at home. From that point on, I tied Cocoa up but did take time off from working on the Cabin to train him.
I installed an electric fence, complete with the white flags. Our first, second, and third attempt did not go well, the same result each time. With shock collar and attached to a leash, we slowly walked to the fence. Reacting with only a slight irritation, Cocoa walked right through the barrier. After many attempts, I gave up. I had too much to do, so I tied him up and went back to working on the Cabin. He was on a long leash until the day he became entangled and knocked over a $200 can of Penofin. I felt terrible, so I let him go to do his own thing.
Cocoa settled into a routine, out at four in the morning for his walkabout, back two hours later. Then, sleep most of the day, eat dinner, and bedtime. Animals are interesting. When Cocoa first arrived, naturally, you didn’t see any wildlife, but after he established a routine, they came back. During his morning walkabout, the deer would often show up, graze through the property without a care in the world, as if they knew when he left and how long he would be gone.
Cocoa Meets a New Friend
One morning in late summer, I let Cocoa out, and within minutes, I heard him barking on the west side of the Cabin. The bark was loud, so I knew he was close, but there was also another noise, like a low pitched moan, I couldn’t quite make it out.
I opened the door, and through the trees was a black bear reared up on his hind legs. I couldn’t see Cocoa, but I could tell he was running back a forth barking. When the bear saw me, he took off with Cocoa in hot pursuit. I yelled for Cocoa to come back (a lot of good that did, he never listens to me), but he did, 10 hours later. Thirsty, tired, and with a slight limp, he seemed to be ok, no cuts or marks. The bear must have led him over some rough terrain.