GRAPEVINE -- Animal control officers are finding it difficult to get a certain Tee Time at the Grapevine Golf Course.
Tee Time, a white terrier, is wanted because she is a stray and, more important, she bit a golfer.
But her friends have come quickly to her defense, saying she was trapped in a drainage culvert for four days before being discovered.
She was hungry, thirsty and scared, so when the golfer came to the rescue, Tee Time bit his finger. That is not her true nature, they say.
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That bite triggered a hunt for Tee Time, who has avoided dogcatchers' efforts for more than two weeks. But authorities say she has to be caught to make sure she does not have rabies.
"It is in the health and safety code," Assistant Police Chief Ben Flanagan said. "If available, the animal must be quarantined for 10 days."
Authorities spotted Tee Time last weekend and shot her with a tranquilizing gun. But the drug did not take effect quickly, so she went into the woods at the municipal golf course, on the east side of the Lake Grapevine dam. She was spotted again a couple of hours later; this time, authorities shot and captured her. But as she was being taken to the animal control truck, she woke up enough to slip out of the noose and ran into the woods again.
She was still on the loose Thursday.
Since the biting incident, animal control authorities have spent part of each day trying to catch Tee Time. She usually hides when authorities are around and avoids their traps, said Jackie Parker, an employee at Mulligan's Grill in the course clubhouse.
City Manager Bruno Rumbelow, who has seen Tee Time at the course several times, said that once Tee Time is caught and serves her 10-day quarantine, the goal is to have her checked out, vaccinated and put up for adoption.
"Everybody who has interacted with Tee Time feels good about her," Rumbelow said. "Her capture will not be the end of the story. ... Our goal is to have a good ending."
But Parker and some golfers don't believe that the dog is adoptable, given her nature to run free over the 27-hole course.
"She's a good dog," Parker said. "She needs a home, but she won't stay in a home."
No one knows for sure where Tee Time came from before drifting onto the golf course more than five years ago.
She often follows golfers around but seems to know her golfing etiquette. She does not bark when someone is lining up a shot. She stays off the greens. And she does not chase golf balls.
Danny Langley, chairman of Grapevine's Golf Course Advisory Board, said Tee Time does not bother anybody.
Most golfers bring treats for her.
Reportedly, however, only Tom O'Malley of Grapevine has developed enough trust with Tee Time to have her eat out of his hand. Everyone else must leave food on the ground. Last week, as O'Malley was giving Tee Time some beef jerky, she became skittish when someone else approached.
"She'll let me touch her under the chin," O'Malley said. "But if anyone else gets within five feet of her, she won't even let me do that. It has taken years to get her to eat out of my hand."
Another golfer, Frank Bee of Grapevine, said everyone wants Tee Time to stay at the course.
"She is an amazing animal," he said.
And although everyone understands why the authorities are after her, Bee said "an awful lot of people will be upset if she is not allowed to stay."