Sunday, March 11, 2012

Rainy Day Women -- beagle in the rain

(with apologies to Bob Dylan)

I woke up at 5 a.m. this morning to the crash of rain. Pouring, pounding rain. I love when it rains. It gives me an excuse to stay inside under the covers.

Can't do that with a dog. I have no fenced in yard, and dogs must do their business (note to self: look into toilet and/or litter box training for Lulu).

Lulu jumps and paws and knocks me down and licks until I finally give in to taking her outside. I grab my hoodie and my shoes and pick up my big-ass black London Fog umbrella.

Lulu sniffs the curved wood handle and regards me with that head cock of hers that clearly says "there's something wrong with you."

You see, beagles are of English descent, and hunters to boot. In my mind that means they are likely genetically predisposed to trotting about in cold, wet climates. Rain? Mud? Wet? Pshaw! Any beagle fears not these things.

But the problem is -- Lulu won't poop on the leash.

Sounds weird? It is, but not uncommon, apparently. I have had a PetCo trainer and an employee at the SPCA tell me that some dogs simply don't like to be watched doing the doo.

I have, on extreme occasions, when no other option was available to her, been able to get Lulu to poop on the leash.

Twice. In the two years I've known her.

And after spending close to an hour outside in the rain, with Lulu on the leash, even knowing that she had to poop, she still did not. Until she was on my carpet and I was not watching.


So when it appeared she had to go out the second time, I bit the bullet and took her to the little fenced-off area in my complex where dogs can walk off-leash. The place had puddles even on a dry day and, as expected, it was a sloppy, spongy, muddy mess when we got there today. What I was dreading.

Lulu did okay, avoiding the puddles, getting a little dirt here and there but nothing major.

Then she saw someone walking a big black dog on a leash outside the fence.

Suddenly no puddle went unsplashed, no muddy spot went unpawed. She ran and jumped trying to get the attention of that dog, howling all the way.

So the doggy did what the doggy had to do.

And now the owner has to do what the owner has to do.

You know what's funny? All that time in the cold and the rain and the mud -- and it's a nice warm shower that really bothered her.

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