Friday, September 27, 2013

It's official: I'm free!

Continuing my personal relationship with the Wellesley Police Department (more on that later), I was more than delighted to have a visit from Animal Control Officer Sue Webb yesterday morning.
Though she did interrupt my morning nap, I was thrilled to have her drop by.

I received Officer Webb in my boudoir, which Mom fortunately had picked up, leaving only, quite appropriately, the carcass of a once-stuffed fox draped on my blanket.

Presumably satisfied that I was not foaming at the mouth or otherwise showing evidence of derangement and disease from rabies, Officer Webb proclaimed the end of my 45-day quarantine. I am officially a totally free dog!

Lest, dear reader, you think I erred in some way to deserve being cast from society for more than a month, I offer a brief explanation, styled after Mom's esteemed Boston College English professor John L. Mahoney:

August 12, 2013. Natick, Massachusetts. An early morning. 8 a.m., in fact. Sunny, but cool. A mother, brown hair in a ponytail, and her child are playing on the playground at the Lilja Elementary School, accompanied by their furry, brown dog.

The evidence, now healed. My psyche, not so much.
I venture to meet the canine. He is tied to the fence. Seemed friendly enough. Suddenly, his tail went stiff. I find myself caught in a deadly bear hug. My neck has been chomped and I am bleeding.

Result: in the clink (sort of) for a month and a half, because I didn't know whether the biter was rabies-free. In the meantime, I'm getting a "not friendly" reputation because Mom hasn't let me meet other dogs. I hope that now I'm cleared we can repair that. I'd be happy to pass on this undeserved reputation to the dog who bit me. If I ever find him.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Woofstock 2013: Barky time for Buddy Dog Humane Society

Woof it up at Woofstock 2013 today at the Hudson Elks!
Hoof it on over to Hudson today for Woofstock 2013, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Hudson Elks Lodge, 99 Park Street (or is it Bark Street?), Hudson. See if you pass the Canine Good Citizen test, check out the canine law enforcemnet demonstration, and woof it up with lots of other dogs! Plus, you're benefiting my home organization, Buddy Dog Humane Society, which saved my life.

Tons of vendors will be on hand, including Happy Hounds Honey of Holliston, plenty of dog rescue organizations, the House Rabbit Network, plenty of vendors selling all you need for your human as well as any of your canine needs. There will be a band (music by Secret Evil Plan—love the name!), food, drink, etc. etc. Sounds awesome!

I'd be there, if it weren't for that little matter of those two big teeth finding a home on my neck, say about 41 days ago. I'll be paroled in just four days, so watch out!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Lost a budgie? He's at our birdfeeder

This budgie seems awfully hungry--he was moving
too fast for my camera. Then again, I'm a lousy picture taker.
Our friend Paul calls Mom "Dr. Doolittle" because she's always finding or rescuing animals. On Sunday, she found a rangy white dog loping around the Lasell College campus. He wasn't the kind you'd want to talk to, being rather aggressive, so Mom called campus police to help.

Unfortunately, after 18 minutes of waiting and keeping an eye out so the big scary guy wouldn't bite anyone or get run over by a car, said big scary dog loped away before police showed up.

I'm not the best at taking photos, and I really don't care a whole lot about birds, but I always like to see a pet find its home. Today, this buderigar showed up at our feeder, and since this species hails from Australia, I guess he's someone's pet. So if you're missing a pretty sky blue budgie, check in with Wellesley Animal Control. They'll know how to get in touch with me. I'd lend this bird my crate, but I have a feeling it's a tad too big.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Shackled again: house arrest diary, day 34

Unrelenting in my search-and-destroy chipmunk mission, I am a blur
of activity in the early a.m. You remember: "Early to bed, early to rise..."
I'm not going to begin the official countdown until day 40, but the terms of my release have been straitened by the removal of the yellowjacket nest. Indeed, they were yellowjackets, not cicada killers, which hunt alone. No, the source of my wasp sting lay underneath the honeysuckle bush.

In case you were wondering, I did not misspell the word straightened. In fact, the word I used, straitened, is not only spelled correctly, it has a completely different meaning from straightened. I mean to say that my confines were further restricted (i.e., straitened, meaning narrowed in scope or range) by the discovery of said nest, and the removal of it. The bee-suited man from Waltham Pest Control explained that the foraging bees would be searching, fruitlessly, for their doomed, rather extensive three-tiered abode, and therefore buzzing angrily in the area in which I most like to pancake.

In other words: no going out in the garden.

You know, this whole problem might never have happened had it not been for chipmunks. I diligently hunt these tiny beasts, and attempt to dig them up, but so far my efforts have been as fruitless as those homeless foraging stinging things.

Mom read that yellowjackets are kind of lazy diggers, and so take advantage of holes already in the ground, like those left by planting shrubs...or by pesky chipmunks.

So, neighbors, please understand: my a.m. baying serves two purposes. One, to warn you of pesky chipmunks. They indeed are in the vicinity. Two, to frighten chipmunks away, in case some yellowjackets decide to move in. Both are known to be dangerous. Cave vespula (beware of yellowjacket). Cave tamias striatus (chipmunk). But don't cave canem, at least not of me. Despite having to serve time, I'm perfectly harmless.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Weekends with Daisy is out, and I'm in the doghouse

Daisy would  never be allowed to lounge in a chair in real life,
so I'm giving her some virtual space in my living room.
"Daisy would never do that," I can feel Mom thinking as I bay up a storm, impatient for the day's walk—no, romp—to start. Already I've been waiting, while Dad makes his traditional Saturday blueberry pancakes and Mom has at least two cups of coffee. I have my own Saturday traditions: jumping on and off the bed, just to make sure Mom is still alive.

Ever since this Daisy came into her life, via Sharron Kahn Luttrell's memoir, Weekends with Daisy, of training a pup to help disabled people, Mom has been comparing me to this stellar example of canine virtue. Look, I know all about behaving. It's just that, true to my nickname, Tuckerby, I prefer not to. I'm bigger than Mom and more stubborn than all get-out, so I just plain win. Pretty much all the time.

Now, I could write my own memoir, but it would be all about training your parents, not your dog. Training the Tucker Way: How to Have the Parents You've Always Wanted would include all of the excellent tips I've shared on my blog, plus some top-secret methods only revealed to my closest friends. I wouldn't dare tell Daisy, were I lucky enough to meet her.

That would not be gentlemanly, and no matter how much I misbehave, I remain a southern gentleman at heart.

Check out the book. You'll be glad you did. Also, you might check out my interview with Sharron about the joys and challenges of having Daisy in her life.