A Winter Tail

My dog, Mr. Pickles, is 10 years old.  If the conversion factor for “dog to human years” is to be believed, that makes him 70 years old.  He still likes to run in snow.
It brings me joy to watch him bound along the side of the road as we go for our morning and evening walks, sproinging through fluffy white powder, as well as leaping over the plow-turds* left by the maintenance folks.  For an old dog, he’s got a lot of life left in him.
This morning, however, i was essentially asleep on my end of the leash.  It had snowed again last night, after a brief warming period.  It was only when 100 pounds of brown mutt sproinged merrily away from me – playing out the entire length of leash – that i realized i was, in fact, standing on a solid sheet of ice.
Suddenly awake, i flapped and slid like a windmill in a hurricane.  In my head?  Cartoon noises were playing… that “Scooby Doo” sound effect used when he’s skittering across a wet floor.  If the overgrown puppy hadn’t suddenly located the EXACT spot to drop his morning poo, and stopped yanking the leash, i was destined for a certain assplant on asphalt.
It’s a damn good thing he’s cute…

Mr. Pickles says "Always play in the snow!"

* “plow turd” is a term i learned from my ex-husband, who grew up in the snowy frontier of upstate New York.  These are the big clumps of gray, icky, icy snow that are dumped at the end of your driveway when the plow trucks come by… generally right after you finish shoveling.

28 thoughts on “A Winter Tail

  1. Oh, be careful! A few years ago my brother was throwing a ball for his big labrador to retrieve on their five acres in Colorado. When the dog got to end of his leash my brother noticed too late that the other end was wrapped around his wrist and the leash snapped with a lot of force. He had a nasty break and his wife had to drive him the hour and a half trip to the hospital in Durango for surgery to repair it. (Of course, he shouldn’t have had anything to eat or drink before surgery, but on the way he ate some M & M’s and drank a Coke and didn’t tell the doctor. That’s my bro.)

    • i had a prior dog (german shephard mutt) go after a rabbit – with the rope/leash wrapped around my legs. as my siblings laughed as i hit the ground when he literally pulled my legs out from under me, i felt the blood from the rope burns on both calves… it was an ‘owie’ for sure.

      as for your bro? why do people like this seem to luck out every damn time?

  2. What’s with this whole freeze/thaw winter/spring/winter gyration anyways? In our neck of the woods, we know spring isn’t due until at least late April. I wish that jet stream would just calm the fuck down and quit fucking with our heads!

    • this years winter weather cycle is…. what’s the technical/meteorological term i’m looking for? ummmm…. “fucked up”. yeah. that’s it… i was riding my motorcycle on a warm new year’s eve, and am now frozen up to my tonsils with this bone-numbing cold snap. yeah. WTFF? (‘what the fucking fuck’ – this deserves TWO fucks)

  3. That’s exactly why so long as I have a dog, I’ll have a yard – let him out and let him do his bid’ness and come home. I slipped on my driveway last year, bit my tongue and smacked my noggin but good.

    Didja pull anything – all your moving parts still in good working order?

    • i would love to turn Mr. P loose… but he’s not street smart, and doesn’t come back when i call him – despite YEARS of training…. just can’t risk it….

      i’m not hurtin’. other than the general ‘i’m fookin’ old’ aches and pains i always have…

  4. Aww, Mr. Pickles. What a cutie. But watch out for assplants. I’m nursing a tailbone injury, and was offered a cortisone shot from my doctor today. Brings new meaning to the phrase “shot in the dark.”

    • that’s the picture i tried to paint – because fortunately, there were no neighbors with cameras… remember, my neighbors are old, and only own ancient Brownies, which require FILM…

  5. My dog is the same way. She’s getting a little older, but she hasn’t lost her spunk entirely (she’s about 10 too). When the snow comes, its the rabbit tracks that occupy her short attention span. Unless something moves. Or is a kid. Or is making a sound. Then she tries to attack it. After a walk, though, I have noticed she spends the rest of the day sleeping. I got really mad at her yesterday. Her tail knocked my martini off the end table. I wouldn’t have minded so much – it wasn’t her fault – but it contained my last two olives dammit. I did forgive her, of course. What are you gonna do? Watch the tail.

    • in warmer weather, when i let him run at the dog park? the dog sleeps for the rest of the day… but he loves it so much! your ‘tail tale’ is also familiar. these pups don’t really understand that they are not lap dogs…

  6. This is why when I walk Ruby she is rarely on the leash. I take her out in our yard to let her do her business (which I do clean up) andthen when we are out on the trails we start on the leash but I let her loose quite quickly, as long as there are no other people to bother.

    • i have tried to train him, but worry that his lack of ‘street smarts’, and inherent ADHD, would lead him to wander off… we used to have to chase him around my old neighborhood when he’d escape my 5′ fence in the back yard…. only way we could get him to come back? open a car door and yell “road trip!” neighbors thought that was his name for awhile..

    • you’ve gotten it FAR WORSE in the wilds of upstate… i almost feel guilty complaining to you…. but you know ‘plow turds’. must have originated up there! i did get lucky. but need to pay better attention on those morning walks…

  7. I’d like to refer to your dog as Dr Pickles, if I may. He has that sort of intelligent got-my-own agenda look that many of the doctors I’ve have met have.
    And when are dogs gonna start walkin themselves again..hmmm?

    • we use a ‘gentle leader’, instead of a choker. but some chains on the paws for the icy weather might have the bonus of making him more attractive to the lady dawggies around the neighborhood. we always are drawn to the ‘bad boys’…

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