Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Hound Dog Love

I've had dogs and cats all my life, but never have I had a hound before. A real hound. Until my border collie mix Katie and I added Max to our family last fall. Max is a Blue Tick Hound or Blue Tick Coon Hound, to be precise. Coming from the East (Virginia suburbs/WashDC) I'd heard of several of the "serious" hunting dogs. What I didn't know was how "lovey-dovey" they were. First thing in the morning, Katie is raring to go outside. Squirrels are waiting, all sorts of fun is outside. She'll bark if I take more than a few seconds to put the tea kettle on. Max, however, wants love. Hound Dog Love, I call it. Several minutes of pats and rubs and all sorts of attention. Then, he goes outside to greet the world.

Today I want to give you an update on how almost-adult Max is doing. He looks like a gangly teenager. His hound body has gotten longer and longer and those legs, those long gangly legs, enable him to actually keep up with fast-as-lightning Katie. He's still got more growing to do. But his face is fully grown. An adult dog face on a gangly teenager's body. Long nose, long soft ears, and those "love me, love me, love me" brown eyes gazing at you.

He still wants to nap with his head on my feet if I'm sitting in a chair (working/laptop/reading). And he's still loves getting into stuff. But....at least he's stopped chewing papers on my dining rooom table/desk. That was scary. The dish towel also isn't as fascinating as it was before. Since I provide big bones for the dogs to chew, that helps.

However, Max has discovered something absolutely irresistible now that it's flower season. Plastic flower pots. In my earlier posts I've talked about the orgy of planting spring flowers, bright happy annuals all over my front yard and planters and several hanging pots to hang from my bishop's crooks around my back patio. I love being on the patio in the shade and working or relaxing-----and enjoying the beautiful flowers.

Well----no more. Apparently those hanging plastic pots were too tempting for Max. I came home the first night and found all three knocked off their hooks and on the ground. All the plants were lying---unmolested---but devoid of pots. The pots---what was left of them---were visible only in small and medium sized pieces of plastic strewn about the yard. The hangers with the hook were eaten.

Okaaaay, I said, I'll get some more and tell Max in no uncertain terms to "stay away from plants!" Ahem. You can guess how that turned out. Max stared at me and looked somewhat contrite, but when I left the next night I returned to find those plants on the ground and out of their pots. Pots were once again in pieces. Man, what a digestive system this dog has. Reminds me of those scenes in "Marley & Me."

So------I surrendered. I replanted the plants in regular pots. Didn't have any empty hanging pots left. And moved them all to the front yard. Now, if I want flowers when I relax on the patio----I take them with me. Yep. I have to take a pot of flowers out with me, put it on the glass table, and then relax in the chaise lounge. And----take the pot back inside with me afterwards. Now that I realized Max has a lot of "Marley" in him, I have no choice.

What's your dog's favorite forbidden "chew toy?" And don't forget to enter our Pet Naming contest. Your pet may appear in a future Cozy Chicks novel. Check out the "Announcement" below my post.
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