Thursday, May 1, 2014

What did Shakespeare say -- something about too too solid flesh melting, and so forth



I stopped by Debbie's place this morning. To walk her dog (this is not her dog, it's Albert). Debbie sports a neck brace these days (temporarily), and cares for three dogs (permanently), assorted cats, and who knows what else -- Debbie has a big heart.

I got there at 9 am; it was 80 degrees and climbing.

Her Kirby, a yellow Lab-ish, is a favorite of mine. The guy's got charm -- which is a good thing, as he's not a perfect gentleman on the leash. He pulls -- something I would normally correct, but he has a gammy leg, which means I can't in good conscience do the Albert-jerk. I can't do much but try to reason with him. "Kirb, please," and "Kirb, give me a break," and "Kirby, mind the shoulder."

The first three blocks, he shows no mercy. Kirby's in command, and we move onward, upward, forward, side-to-side; explore every fresh scent, piece of paper, blade of grass, mailbox, tree stump, and whatever teacup pup lurks behind a fence. Until about block five.

By block six, it's 10 o'clock and 90 degrees. That's when Kirby decides the death march is over. He starts to limp. Suddenly, I'm the bad guy, it's all my fault. He turns to me with moist, accusing eyes that say, "What sort of monster are you, anyway? We're frying out here, and I'm a veteran."

So we stop to rest on someone's wet lawn, get his heart rate down. We pass the time, chatting about this and that.

"What do you think about this NBA Clipper thing, Kirbs?"

Sigh.

"Throwing your hat in the owner-ring?"

Errwhoooosh.

"Ready to go now?"

Pfffffft.

"We're just a block away, soldier. Whaddya say we march on -- there's a water dish with your name on it."

Shuuuuufft.

"Allrighty then. We'll wait here until you give me the word."

Mark Twain, or maybe Teddy Roosevelt, had the best dog quote ever, and I can't find it, or even recreate it. But it's something to the effect of -- if you want to know how little power you have in this life, try getting some other man's dog to sit.

Or woman's.



27 comments:

  1. Looks like Kirby has 2 women under his thumb... :-) I think the next time u walk him he will know and act better... just pray for another hot day....u shoulda had Cesar M. there. Kirby would of been beggin u to take him back..

    ReplyDelete
  2. Will Rogers said, "If you get to thinking you're a person of some influence, try ordering someone else's dog around."

    ReplyDelete
  3. Times ago I feel the same walking
    my daughter's dog.
    Great quote!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ha ha, this is brilliant - what a great way to describe what walking an excited dog is like! Kirby's living proof that dogs live for the moment and can't think ahead - like, I'd better pace myself if we're going for 6 blocks.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Look at that -- Liz has the quote, the real deal. Will Rogers. Ah, of course.

    ReplyDelete
  6. And Bellis, that is so true. I suppose they'd all be drunkards and addicts with maxed-out credit cards and hundreds of puppies underfoot, given half a chance.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Yeah, good quote! Nice looking dog, plus character. I must say, it seems that every dog-owner I know has had a story of sadness or serious annoyance in the last year or two. Gives me pause about my doggy future--been dogless since 2002. But I sure do still see their charms and smarts.

    ReplyDelete
  8. the experiment would never have been necessary if you ever tried teaching a cat how to walk on leash

    ReplyDelete
  9. My current cat has long pointed ears and a very short tail. She appears when she wants to. She asks nothing except that I give her personal space and respect. Leash walking is not in the picture.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Well, at least you get Albert to sit. Or so it would appear.

    ReplyDelete
  11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  12. How about this Twainism, “If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and man.”

    ReplyDelete
  13. Albert is a lovely dog, and the camera loves him. How does he feel about you walking another dog? Or is he just glad to stay home where it's cool?

    ReplyDelete
  14. On the island are a few places where one can let their dog go, unleashed. Wonder how Kirby would do there. Will Rogers put it well.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Ranger always pulled and pulled and pulled no matter what harness or collar, I spent more time braking my bike than pedaling. And then one day - pffffft. I can't begin to tell you how much I miss that Ranger, this new one really just wants to rest.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Looks like Albert is enjoying the joke.

    Should the occasion arise again, one of the things you can do to help curb the pulling on the leash is to take hold of his collar and turn in a tight circle. Stop and then proceed. He'll keep pulling, but eventually, he tires of having to stop everything before he can get back to doing what he enjoys - sniffing and exploring. My dog is a terrible leash puller for the first while, too. It's exhausting. It's also part of the breed, unfortunately. Sounds like you get plenty of opportunity for good conversation though. :o))

    Carolynn

    ReplyDelete
  17. When we were in between dogs as a kid, I tried to leash train my guinea pig.

    Oh, PJ, I know exactly where you're at.

    Like that one, too, Birdman.

    Carolynn, I think it is the breed. It took me FOUR years before Albert understood the concept. Your tip is a very good one, but I can't do it with Kirby because it might hurt his leg.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Wow, Debbie's had enough to deal with. A neck brace ought to be enough, and then I hope she can have a break. Not literally.

    I had a chance to walk Kirby once and I didn't know about his gammy leg. It wouldn't have mattered. He was just as you say, enthusiastic at first, then ready to go home. A jovial kind of guy.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Good story! And Albert's always such a photo hound.... ;)

    ReplyDelete
  20. Kirby is lucky to have a kind person walking him.

    ReplyDelete
  21. "Altadena Hiker" has been included in Tuesday's Sites To See for this week. Be assured that I hope this helps to point many new visitors in your direction.

    http://asthecrackerheadcrumbles.blogspot.com/2014/05/sites-to-see.html

    ReplyDelete
  22. Haha!!! So accurate!!! Another of my favorite Will Rogers quotes: "If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went."

    ReplyDelete
  23. So many things to sniff and so little time.

    It is nice of you to walk your friends dog for her. They can a little grumpy if they don't get out.

    Great post Karin...

    ReplyDelete