Sunday, April 5, 2009

Boys Just Want To Have Fun

Jacob no longer flits about a dog park looking for friends, tennis
balls and sticks. No. Jacob, one of my two royal standard poodles,
has discovered the underworld, an extensive and busy highway
crisscrossing inches beneath his feet.

The world of gophers.

Good grief.

We stop at the Cambria, CA, dog park for an hour or so to socialize,
to skip, to run and play. We're doing a lot of driving today and we
need to stretch, to unfurl our legs, to wiggle out of this motor home
cocoon. The park is empty, except for a grouchy woman with bright pink
lips and her also grouchy dog. Both dog and woman growl at us, so we
distance ourselves.

I busy myself picking up tennis balls, Josh (my other poodle) finds
the water dish under the shade tent, so he hangs out there and
Jacob ... well Jacob starts poking his nose down gopher holes, every
one he can find. I toss a few balls his way and he ignores them. I run
up close to him, clapping my hands and calling him to play. He zig
zags away, nose to the ground, ears perked. I notice the zig-zagging
becomes manic. Has he gone nuts?

I then see him leap into the air and dive into the ground with his
feet, scooping shovelfuls of dirt between his legs. Then, WHAM! He
slams his face, nose first, into the ground. 

No kidding. His face. He does this repeatedly: dig, dig, dig, face slam, face slam, face slam
(see the pic).

Just so you know: Every hole he digs, I fill back in. It's dog park etiquette.

Thanks to Cindy and Jerry, local poodle owners in the know, I discover
Jacob's not nuts. The zig zagging is him following the gophers as they
scamper along their little underground tunnels. He's digging to get

And his face-first routine is his hopeful nature.

Oh, Jacob.

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