Monday, May 26, 2014

The best part of my day: part II, dogs outside

On Friday and Saturday, I took the chi trio to the dog park.  Tiny Dog insisted I carry her for the second half of the park loop, princess that she is. But their joy at being at the park was infectious: bursts of running and circling back, panting and smiling, eyes bright.  I wanted to stay all day.

Today, the six of us went to a city park. Three happy Chis and Atticus with his tongue hanging out.  Sue had a crazy idea. She wanted Atticus to pull her while she sat on my new longboard. This fun only lasted a few minutes. He looked perplexed: Do what? Go where? With you? Thankfully she had on gloves and a helmet because she tipped right over. Kablam. 

So I skated instead, and those that know me, will be concerned. I have terrible balance. But I am getting better! And this is part of the longboarding plan as well.


And despite being 43, I am not buying a sports car. A board and a new cool helmet will do. Tiny Dog raced behind me as I slowly toodled down the bike path on a secluded section.  One could walk faster on foot. But she smiled up at me, like she had at the dog park, and who could ask for more?

Monday, May 19, 2014

Garden smarden

Before it started to lightly rain this morning, I have to confess that I committed astericide. 
I dug out about one-quarter of the proliferative New England asters from the back yard. This mess all started 10 years ago, when I took one stalk of flower from the railroad tracks and put it in my yard.  I was a fool.

The soil was soft, and they came out easily, unlike the last time I did this five years ago.  I almost broke the shovel then—the soil was hard, dry and the roots intractable.  I might have done some swearing.

Today, Tiny Dog and George watched me from the porch as I dug, banged the roots against the ground to remove the extra dirt and hauled the plants to the growing pile.  If sat down to rest, the girls would come off the porch and sit on my lap.  Tiny Dog licked and licked my face, and George nudged my hand with her nose. Wren went inside to sleep on the duvet; she prefers couch comfort to worrying about me flinging dirt, making noise, and yielding a shovel, all super scary stuff to her.

I replaced a few of the asters with a present from a friend’s garden: iris, their own kind of beautiful spreading malevolence.  And now grackles are flocking to the dirt, to pick out fresh, fat worms. Happy spring to you.

And here’s a picture that proves it was winter here earlier, all three the little monsters snuggling in front of the heat vent. 

Thursday, May 1, 2014

I could go tinier

Last month at work, I saw a dog that weighed 3 ½  pounds.  It was a chihua, who was not pleased with her checkup.  She was the size of a large squirrel and her eyes did not blink, in case we opted to eat her instead of give her an exam.  Then I said to the tech, I could go smaller!

Tiny Dog is a trim six pounds. I put a pound of muscle on the girl since I adopted her. I consider her very very small.

For comparison, this week, I examined a 170 lb Irish wolfhound, whose nose was the size of Tiny Dog. This hound saw her walking around behind the clinic front desk, and he started to whine. He loves small dogs, said his owner. I got a little nervous, put her in a cage.

When I started living with dogs, my first one being an 80 pound lab cross, I did not imagine smaller dogs as even the same species. I could wrap my arms around his big red chest and felt grounded. The small breed dogs seemed to flutter by, out of my periphery.

I helped my three large dogs as they declined, in and out of the house, hard on us all.  We put in ramps, carpets, and used slings. Everyone’s backs hurt. Now, things have shifted.  Now, I can hold Tiny Dog in the palm of my hand, tuck her into my jacket, and off we go.  I sneak her into a coffee shop and for a moment, we pretend we are in Europe. But in the EU, big dogs get to have coffee too. As they should.

Latte or bubble tea, Tiny Dog insists she come along.