Gus is 45 lbs. and stands 21” at his shoulder. Daisy is 39 lbs. and, though more ‘leggy’, stands 20” tall. She is more energetic and frolics a bit more but Gus is a close second. They get along well and play and go on local (property) adventures but, generally speaking, they are ‘chill’. Easy-going. Nice manners. Good temperament. They are also healthy, strong and learning rapidly. They pretty much have us trained already!
They are pretty chill until they sense they are headed to the car. They really do not like the car. Right now, nobody does. Our car smells of dog puke. CUTE dog puke but still, puke by any other name is still puke.
Actually, Sal is starting to smell a little pukey, too. To assuage Daisy’s slightly more sensitive stomach, Sal puts Daisy on her lap when we are in the car. Fifteen minutes into the trip, Sally and Daisy’s breakfast are one. There’s a shriek, a bit of mild cursing and I pull over. Sal gets out with her lap dripping with kibble-goo. Daisy looks woebegone and just lies in what is still on the seat. Sal gets about half cleaning it all up and about then, Gus adds to the splatter. There is no shrieking at this point but the mild cursing steps up a notch. Stinky rags, paper towels and such are being deployed and plastic bags are starting to fill. But, after ten minutes or so of fussing, we get going again…..and then 20 minutes later, we get to repeat the whole gastric assault thing one more time. If the trip is longer than 45 minutes, we get it again. We now travel even less than ever before.
There was an exception to that the other day but that was because only the boat traveled. The dogs are acclimating to the boat nicely. And, anyway, I had the car. Sal and the pups went on a community hike to a farther-out island. A hike ‘round these parts’ is really more of a death march, a survival challenge and a not-so-subtle statement of fitness. Did I mention that I had the car? I chose the day of the hike to go into Campbell River and grind my face into the revolving fan-blades of doing ICBC paperwork and Motor Vehicle registration. Plus I needed some parts. It was hell but it was not the LONG MARCH the community undertook.
There were twelve adults, a few kids and half a dozen dogs. Concern for Daisy and Gus’s stamina, abilities and pace was expressed at the start. Awe and respect were declared when the hike was complete three and bit hours later. Daisy and Gus (four months old) scrambled up boulders, forded streams and generally acted as capable as any of the other dogs, a bit less than the kids, of course, and a great deal more than the adults. This was a real hike. Think: West Coast Trail. Getting to base camp on Everest would be easier.
When they thought the day was done and Sal and the dogs collapsed into sleepy bliss at home, I called them on the walkie-talkie. “Could you come over and get me?” So, Sal and the pups jumped up and headed over to pick me up. They still had something in reserve. But not much. After a nice doggy dinner (Sal had a human dinner) they conked out. I am not sure Sal noticed. Her eyes closed early, too.
Dogs = puke-cleaning, exercise, feeding, teaching and gobs of attention. Sal says they are easier to live with than me but I am pretty sure she was kidding. I mean, I hardly ever puke.