On our 2nd day, a small local dog found us during one of our rest breaks; she was very friendly, affectionate, and seemed perfectly comfortable with us. She had a very tight wire bound around her neck which was biting into the skin; once we removed the wire and gave her a friendly pat, she seemed totally smitten with us. Despite multiple attempts to shoo her away and send her back ‘home’ (wherever that may have been, if she had one), she continued to walk with us… and walk and walk, on and on.
The next morning we even tried paying a local tribesman some shillings to try and bring her back those many hours to where she had first joined us. She had other plans however, as she chewed through 2 sets of leash ropes, tried to bite the man, and simply refused to go back… and reappeared down along the trail to join us hours later, determined to be ‘ours’. She had proven herself to be a “proper walker”, so we finally conceded and let her stay. Our Kenyan camel guides named her “Safari” (“journey” in Swahili).
Unfortunately, Safari was in heat and thus attracted many male companions, with one particularly ‘attached’ to her (in many ways!), and this dog now also refuses to leave. We keep trying to find a good home for both dogs along the way, where they can be fed and nurtured—either that or Amanda will have herself 2 more dogs, or MCC a pet (or two)! The male dog is much more typical for a Kenyan dog: clearly not used to being treated as a pet, and accustomed to scrounging for any food he could find. He was quickly named “Mwizi” (“thief” in Swahili), as he would often escape with small morsels of food (and sometimes not so small) in a flash.