Tiki Taco – Behind the Music

Ok, so Tiki clearly isn’t a musician, and this isn’t a rockumentary about his trials and tribulations as a rockstar. (Although in our world, Tiki is definitely a rock god.) Actually, the blog title is an evil ploy to grab your attention and give you a glimpse into Tiki’s life. You may see him in our lobby, but we watch him behind the scenes. The more time we spend with Tiki in our homes, around our families and pets, the more we see his character. This story is just one illustration (of many) that should paint a picture for you.

In 2012, our manager Michelle adopted Glow the kitten, and Tiki was his first friend. Glow grew up with Tiki, often sharing the bed at our front desk or napping together in Michelle’s office. This was Michelle’s way of acclimating Glow to our Good Dog family of pups and humans, and our mascot took the job seriously. He is unrelentingly loyal, loving and helpful to his friends, especially the tiny white kitten.

Glow is now fully grown and doesn’t quite need Tiki’s brotherly protection. Among the Good Dog family of pets, the two are pretty much equals. On October 13, however, the dynamics shifted. A crafty little ninja, Glow managed to escape his yard and was struck by a car in front of his home. Thankfully a passerby saw him – battered and bruised but still alive – and called the numbers on his tag. Michelle rushed Glow to the ER, where he remained unable to move and in pain for days. The vets treated his injuries but were unsure whether he’d use his front left leg again.

Upon release from the hospital, Glow arrived at Good Dog in a laundry basket full of blankets and toys. Tiki unleashed a cry right from the start (one of his trademark part-goat, part-crybaby shrieks). But this wasn’t one of his customary pleas for attention. It could’ve been Glow’s inability to leave the basket, or maybe Tiki knew his friend was in pain. Either way, Tiki was clearly upset. He tried his best to gain closer access, scuffling anxiously around the office, yanking at various blankets and other obstacles, and throwing a minor hissy to protest the state of affairs.

Over the next few weeks, whether at home at work, Tiki rarely left Glow’s side. (And if he did, he’d check in often.) He was a regular fixture around his injured friend, sleeping on a makeshift bed at night and safeguarding their space during the day. With plenty of other dogs to play with, and plenty of other spots to sleep, this was the choice Tiki made. Pinky the pup would often drop in, checking on her kitty sibling and his protector.

Glow healed quickly and, thank goodness, began using his injured leg. While he still can’t jump on the couch, he’s back to taunting Charlie the cat and conducting other ninja-related business. Tiki is back to normal as well, but the incident struck us as interesting. Maybe Tiki remembered the pain of his own car accident and knew Glow was hurting. Or maybe he simply missed the rambunctious side of his BFF. Regardless, our little mascot rocked the role of caretaker when called upon. Just one of the many reasons we love him to pieces.

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