She didn’t know then that she was destined to become a princess. She was black, soft and fluffy with a white star on her chest.
The soon-to-be-princess was a little Tibetan Terrier who expected nothing more from her day than the routine of feeding, sleeping and occasionally a little gentle play. All she knew was the safety of tucking in close to her mother and the nurturing warmth of her presence. Each night her mother’s heartbeat lulled her to sleep.
As the weeks passed she grew bigger but it was only when she snuggled next to her mother that she felt safe.
They called her Bovais Ladyhawk. It meant nothing to her. It sounded a strong, fierce name and she didn’t feel strong or fierce. In fact, she was a little timid and shy and many things frightened her. The world outside the kennel seemed very loud, very big and very scary. So she stayed close to her mother confident that as long as she could hear that heartbeat, all would be well.
Then one day when she was six weeks old the worst thing she could ever have imagined happened.
She was picked up, taken from her mother, from the little run she had always lived in, and put in a box with a wire front. The soon-to-be-princess was scared. She whimpered and cried. She wanted her mother. She didn’t want to go away.
The soon-to-be-princess was taken on a long journey and when it finished she was very tired but she was also very frightened. There were no familiar smells and she couldn’t see or hear her mother.
She was very anxious.
Then she was put down onto something soft and springy and for a moment the soon-to-be-princess forgot to be afraid. The stuff she was walking on smelt so good and felt so cool on her paws. She had never felt grass before.
The soon-to-be-princess ran around on the grass with her nose parting the soft blades as she played.
Then she remembered her mother and became afraid again. She cried.
Suddenly a big nose stretched down and touched her nose very gently. The soon-to-be-princess inhaled a familiar smell and looked up into the big brown eyes of her Uncle Zac. He was very excited to see her and they began running around the grass together.
Zac told her that she wasn’t called Ladyhawk anymore. Her new name was Zena.
And that night as she shared his bed and went to sleep with his heartbeat in her ears Zena, or as he liked to call her, The Princess, knew she was home and safe.