Post # 288 Dog Tails

August 25, 2014 at 3:30 PM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Post # 288 Dog Tails

It’s the dog days of summer.  Heat is up; humidity is up; people are panting and dogs are trying not to move at all.  In my part of the country, and in many other parts, clouds start building up into huge threatening storm clouds.  Sometimes, if we’re lucky, the clouds actually release some rain on us, but usually it fades away be early evening.  The air feels thick and going outside is a decision not made lightly.

I was sitting with some friends the other night enjoying the a/c and realizing that while the cloud build up was pretty spectacular, there was no storm in it.  I mentioned the dog days of summer and we got to telling dog stories, and for some reason, they all involved food, of some kind, whether dog food or people food (which is really dog food but only after people are done with it.)


The first weekend that we had our first rescued dog, Sporty, we went typically nuts and bought a billion toys, twenty pounds of dog food, and a chew toy that was veggie based.  We let him wander around our apartment to get his bearings, sitting on furniture, cuddling in laps, the normal dog stuff.  I tossed the chew toy to him and we figured it would last several days.  Fifteen minutes later, we couldn’t find it.  He’d chewed it and swallowed it.  So we just laughed it off and forgot about it.  The next day we decided to do the yuppie/puppy thing so we took him to the park to walk him on the leash and get him used to other dogs, that kind of thing.  We’re walking along the path when he decides it’s time to squat and take care of business.  We watched as this gigantic was of nuclear green toxic waste was expelled from his butt.  I’ve never seen anything like it before or since.  We were freaking, wondering what vet would be open on Sunday, and what could have caused it.  Suddenly, we both remembered the green veggie chew toy.  We bought no more of those.



Sporty was very very fond of paper towels.  He didn’t just shred them.  He ate them.  I was constantly taking them away from him, or doing everything I could to keep them away from him.  He always found them somehow.  Most of the time, they didn’t present a problem.  Once in a while, I’d have to give him an assist.  Good thing I have a strong stomach.  One time, I got home a little after my regular time.  It was a drizzly, rainy kind of day in Virginia.  Neither one of us wanted to be outside, but he hadn’t had a chance to go for several hours so it was necessary.  Normally, when it rained, Sporty would just get outside, go, and be done.  This particular time, he was taking his time, soaking us both.  Finally, he squatted and pooped out an entire wad of paper towels.  You could still see the design on the paper.  I usually picked up after him, but this time I left the paper towel where it was.  A year later, it was still there, and you could still recognize the design.


My first cocker spaniel was named Shasta and she was a crazy little dog.  She was the only dog I ever had who would not overeat.  I could put food in her bowl and she’d eat what she wanted, leave the rest, and go back for a mouthful when she felt like it.  One time, my ex-wife and I noticed that while we were eating in front of the TV, Shasta would scamper into the kitchen, grab a mouthful of kibble, bring it into the living room where we were and drop it on the floor.  Then she would proceed to eat it slowly.  The only time she did this was when we were eating.  She was trying to join us for supper!  When she was a puppy and the water dish would be empty, she’d pick it up and carry it to the nearest person and drop it on their foot.  Then she’d sit and wait patiently for the person to fill it and put it back so she could get a drink.


My current dogs are all strange little critters.  Every meal time is an experience.  They’ve gotten very finicky in their eating habits.  The puppy eats anything and everything.  He scours the floor constantly looking for anything that’s been dropped, or blown inside by the winds.  He eats plants outside, and bugs inside.  He chases flies, dust bunnies, anything he thinks will fill his stomach.  He’s learned to not disturb the other dogs when they have their noses in their food.  He won’t eat his dinner until he’s sure that the other dogs don’t have something better than he does.  But the other dogs tend to be finicky, too.  Jack is like Shasta in that he will eat only when he’s hungry.  He’s not overweight, and is a svelte bundle of muscle and fur.  But he doesn’t like to eat when the others are watching him.  So I have to turn him so he can’t see the other dogs.  Dusty, well, Dusty is chubby and wants to eat all the time.  He suddenly won’t eat out of a bowl, or a plate.  he wants to eat off the floor.  I’ll fix a bowl of dog food, add a little chicken or beef, set it down, and he’ll circle the bowl like it’s going to bite him.  Doesn’t matter which bowl I give him.  He sniffs and looks at me then stands there looking at his bowl.  He might take a tentative bite or two, but he doesn’t really eat until it gets poured on the floor.  Then he eats everything on the floor, licks the floor, licks his bowl, checks Jack’s bowl, then looks at the puppy eating before he wanders away.

The coolest thing all the dogs do is after they’re done, they come over with their tails wagging to say thank you.  Or maybe they’re just checking to see if I’ve got more for them.



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