Huntress of the Lens


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Walking the Yard

I will sheepishly admit that I am one of the many who have made profiles for my dogs on "Dogbook," which is a facebook application that lets you pretend that your dogs are people too. Normally I hate it when someone wants to apply human attributes to something that is not human. 

No, your cat does not think it's a person. No, your dog does not think it's a cat, or want to drive your car just because it chooses to sit in the driver's seat while it waits for your return. No, "God" has no petty human emotions like anger, jealously, happiness, desire or a thirst for vengeance. Humans want to make everything human, it's just what we do. 

I'm just a charming mass of contradiction, I made a Dogbook for all three of my dogs. My dogs are friends with other dogs. My dogs "write" comments to each other, and change their status. This is ridiculous, and still I do it. I believe everyone is allowed to do things that are silly and totally hypocritical to the speeches they make to anyone who will listen, as long as it's harmless and won't cost you your job. Being a Republican who votes NO on any issue that will further equality for all and/or being a pastor who rails against the evils of homosexuality and then cruises the men's bathroom for quickie blowjobs from strangers does not fit into this category. Dogbook does.

I have had a fence around the front part of my back yard for years, and by fence I mean a collection of rotting boards united by ivy and chicken-wire. My two smallest dogs have spent years exploring the joys of violating this perimeter and taking themselves for walks. We had to be careful not to look at that "fence" too hard, because that may have caused it to deteriorate even further. One gate was dependent on a series of trash cans to keep it closed and make it too tall to jump over.

Yesterday a dear friend built us a new fence. It is absolutely dog-proof, and has thwarted every attempt to use the old methods of exit from the yard. I have just spent some wonderful coffee-in-the-sun time watching a very intelligent poodle (named Jeff, you can find him on dogbook) trying to figure out why his whole world has changed, and looking for chinks in this new yard-armor.

He's very slow and methodical about it. First, nose the gate. It has a little give to it, and the latch makes a promising rattle, there must be a way to use this to his advantage. Then he goes over to the other gate, and finds the same thing, yet both gates resist his advances. What about that place where he used to be able to tightrope-walk the cement and go out through the rebar fencing there? Huh, that's got wood fence all the way to the house now. Go down the basement steps and stand with front paws on the short cement wall. That hole was there just yesterday, and yet now it's solid wood. Hmm. Cruise the perimeter again, slowly, nose to every crack. Stand with paws on fence and gauge the height, can it be jumped? No. There is still world on the other side of this fence, and he wants to go there. Repeat this process several times.

His best friend and mate Honey Moon (also on Dogbook) follows behind, but her only contribution is the occasional high-pitched whine, she lets him do all the heavy thinking. She is very smart as well, but specializes in walking very low to the ground, very slowly, in order to become invisible. This is her super power, he is the brains of this operation. She is also able to turn into smoke and slip through the smallest of cracks, but has never been confronted with cracks this narrow. 

I sat in the lovely sun, watching this process and drinking coffee, feeling triumphant that I have finally put an end to the spontaneous trips of these two little escape artists and imagining what they're going to be posting about it on Dogbook. 

Mac Johnson (you guessed it, his profile is there as well) ate some sticks and found an old Kong to chew on. He has never developed a taste for Out-Of-The-Yard, but really, really wants to dig in that box called "Get out of my garden!" since it seems so important that he not go in there. He will always settle for chewing up an entire log after being reprimanded a couple of times.

I live on a busy street, and my little dogs face great peril every time they go on walk-about. I am thoroughly enjoying their consternation at the fact that those days are long gone. Feel free to add any of them to your friend list, they will "answer" you if you post to them.

100% Thanks to Christopher Wilkie and JP for building us that fence. Much love and eternal gratitude!

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The fish can fly, the dogs and cats dance together and all the flowers are edible.