On The Occasion Of Master Bogart’s 1st Birthday

Well, the Boge-meister turned a year old this week.  We’ve been looking forward to this day for about ten months now, confident that with each passing month, Bogey would mature a little, learn a bit more and begin to show signs of the amazing young guy he is destined to be.  By his first birthday we were sure he would be knighted as the third “Sir” of the Round Table.

IMG_0170

Let’s just say some puppies advance more quickly than others.

His Aunt Lori calls him ‘her little nugget’ – her love for him is one of his redeeming qualities.    The truth is that there are nuggets rolling around in Bogey’s brain, like the numbered orbs in a power ball machine.  Very few thoughts translate into a logical sequence of actions with this little guy.  Jo has offered to put together a behavior management program for him.  I’m thinking of taking her up on it.

He occasionally knows his name, although this is a variable occurrence unless treats are involved.

We think he hears voices.

None of them are ours.

There is something under the bed (the carpet) that inspires low growls and threats.  The ripple created by the pool filter is reason enough to howl menacingly into the darkness (from behind my legs – one mustn’t take unnecessary risks after all).  He debates with golems in his sleep; the golems win.

IMG_0273

 

He has finally potty-trained us – as long as Andy remembers the 9:00PM walk.  Should he forget, all bets are off.

I will say that Bogey is highly verbal, engaging in various conversations with real and/or imagined characters whether awake or asleep.  He has learned that if he whines incessantly (and it really is a whine), the Sirs will forego any toy with which they are playing, and let him have it, so that they may enjoy a little peace.  He may be a little short of brain cells, but he knows how to manipulate a crowd.

He is ridiculously cute – despite his apparent lack of smarts.  And he adores Andy.  In truth, wherever Andy goes, Bogey is right there.  Andy is besotted and looks at Bogey adoringly while often commenting, “he’s going to be a terrific dog when he grows up a bit”.  Um…ok sweetie, whatever you say.

When we drive up to the mountains, Master Bogey sits up front with Andy.  I sit in the back with the Sirs.  Never looking out the side window, or sticking his little head out to catch a breeze, he sits straight and looks at the road ahead, focused on…well, nothing probably.  Occasionally he checks in with those of us in coach, sniffing with a certain snobbery I don’t find all that becoming.

IMG_0340

Earlier this week, we sang “Happy Birthday” to our baby dog, and as he began jumping up and down, I felt this urge to break into “You’ve Got To Fight For The Right To Party”.  He is definitely a party dude.  I’ve always been a James Taylor kinda girl.  Sigh…

And yet, as I write this he’s asleep on my foot.  He leaps and pounces with a complete lack of grace.  He loves everyone he meets – arguably more than they may want to be loved.  Teddy cleans Bogey’s face with affection and Bogey in turn licks Archie’s face diligently.  They’re a pack.  They’re my fur-guys.  And I guess we were due for a little crazy.

with one of our grand-dogs Henry...

with one of our grand-dogs Henry…

Home Again

“The mountains are calling and I must go” — John Muir

I could have stayed at our mountain home for far longer than we did.  Air that was breathlessly cold; sky and ground the same color white, blurring the boundary that keeps one anchored to the ground; good friends (who fortunately arrived after the new heat pump was installed) – and Sir Bogey.

The Sirs have been to the house before, but this time Bogey got to be the ‘special’ fur-kid who made the trip.  He loves being part of the pack, but he really delighted in being the center of attention.  Four adults catering to his every whim, four laps to test, four sets of ears listening to his lengthy diatribes and demands.  He’s quite the puppy, with far more opinions and expectations than any puppy I have ever had.  Needless to say, he’s training us very well.

At night, he would see his reflection in every window and was desperate to have the interloper evicted from the premises.  Same thing with the floor length mirror.  He huffed and lunged, banging his head repeatedly.  Not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but arguably one of the cutest.  When he is with the other Sirs he is far bolder than when he’s on his own.  Every morning he would venture outside, greeting the frozen air with a lot of bluster and bark – from behind my legs.  He was more intrepid when the sun rose,  jumping through the snow with abandon, skidding around the driveway as if his paws were made of fiberglass.  Bogey maximizing his moments – playing with abandon, sleeping heavily, eating with enthusiasm and delighting in tummy rubs.  He’s impulsive and demands the most from the world around him, for last he looked, it’s totally his world.  As I said, he’s training us well.  And having his perspective while we snuggled into the days made any sense of the serious impossible.  We even played a new game, sort of like ‘Marco Polo‘ but calling “Bogey” or “is the puppy with you?” instead.

Icing delayed our departure, and I was ambivalent when the salt truck arrived.  Home is wherever love is, so arguably it travels.  But it’s the peace of the mountains, the demand that you scale back your worries and amp up the volume on appreciating the smallest of delights.  Feeling snowflakes on your face, playing with abandon, talking with friends, sleeping heavily and treading lightly on the earth.  Bogey is teaching us well.  The mountains are the perfect backdrop for lessons such as these.

IMG_0257IMG_0258IMG_0262IMG_0261IMG_0260

If The Mountain Won’t Come To The Sirs…

…one brings the Sirs to the mountains.  We came up here last night to check on a heating system which I left in a questionable state on Wednesday and a pending installation of shades and blinds.  Up here, you leave a house key at the lodge and people come and go whether or not you’re around.  A little strange for me, but a little instructive too.  No one trashed the house, took anything, scratched any walls.  They do their thing and they leave.  I like being a part of a community that trusts that much.

True, I felt a bit like the theme from “Deliverance” should have played when I stopped at a guns and ammo shack last night to pick up some milk. No, there’s no Seven-Eleven.  Two guys dressed in camo behind the counter, one needing dental work, the other needing a haircut.  “Can we get somethin’ for ya, ma’am?”  They were really very sweet, despite my discomfort with standing in the midst of a veritable arsenal of hunting stuff and snuff with one quart of milk behind multiple six packs of beer.

Anyway, other than Bogey throwing up in my lap, Teddy shaking and panting for the first hour of the trip (even though he had on his Thunder-Shirt) and Archie desperately trying to figure out the benefits of lying down, no, standing up..no, lying down…um, standing up, it was a decent trip.  Now these guys are not exactly urban dogs – our house sits on a bit of land, they have chased their share of deer (well, Bogey hasn’t – he barks and then runs behind my legs), smelled the unmistakable markings of a fox, rolled in enough strange animal excrement to make dog shampoo a staple under the sink.  But now we’re in the mountains – bears, deer that are far larger than the ones back home, bobcats – probably tigers and rhinos too. “Mutual Of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom” meets “Robin Hood”.

They jumped out of the car and into the leaves – noses down, tails up and ears on high alert.  I was just imploring them to stay where I could see them and do their business.  They were tentative for a nanosecond, but their curiosity prevailed – where the hell were they?  These smells, the sounds – they needed to go in and out of the house at least ten times before settling down to a thorough exploration of the house.  Bogey – Bogey, the juvenile delinquent of puppies if ever there was one, proceeded to look for something to get into or chew that would guarantee a chase around the house (he chose one of my shoes).  Happily, he soon discovered himself in a mirror, which captured his attention far longer than any other activity of the evening.  If he wasn’t so ridiculously cute, I would be looking into canine reform schools.

The sun is rising in a pink and blue sky, the Sirs are currently sleeping after a couple of vigorous explorations of the great outdoors and the coffee is burning my tongue.  So far, so good.  Bogey hasn’t found any desiccated frogs to bring into the house, Archie hasn’t run off in an intrepid search of the neighborhood and Teddy with his characteristic maturity is just stickin’ close to me.  If the day continues to unfold this way, I think it’ll be a far better introduction to the mountains than either Andy or I anticipated.  Of course, it’s still early.

An Ode To Puppy Training

 

IMG_0189

Bogey, Oh Bogey

My patience has been lost

Your puppy licks are heavenly

Your belly is just boss

 

But Bogey, dear Bogey

Your head is incredibly hard

Your habits indiscriminate

Instead of in the yard

 

I do not mind the teething

The chewing or tripped-upon toys

The relentless teasing of your brothers

For you’re still a baby boy

 

Dear Bogey, my Bogey

Why is it you can’t see

How wrong it is to squat in the kitchen

And look at me as you pee?

photo

Welcome Sir Bogart

Well, we had a very calm ride home and so far, so good…The Sirs are a bit ambivalent – and Archie did try to share Bogey’s lunch…It’s been a challenge to get him out of Andy’s lap as you can see…

IMG_0215

IMG_0214

And now it’s nap time, and the newest Sir is making it very clear that he values his privacy.

photo

Something tells me these next couple of weeks are going to make blogging a challenge – time snatched between trips to go potty.  But he is awfully cute..