Thursday, July 1, 2010

Give a dog a bone.........

“This old man, he played one, he played nic nac on my thumb

With a nic nac paddywhack, give a dog a bone…….”

     Who knew that phrase could hold such truth; or maybe they did? At any rate, the saying “give a dog a bone” instills canine loyalty better than any other trick I’ve come up with. Should any further proof be needed, “the proof is in the pudding” as in the picture of Sentry fast asleep at the open front door. I guess watching me exercise is boring.

     I have often heard it said that people resemble their dogs (ever watch one of those shows where they feature a huge poodle and its owner – I rest my case, need I say more?) We also tend to choose our dogs based on certain traits, whether we are aware of it or not and sometimes those traits are those that mimic our own. The German shepherd is known for its extreme loyalty so I was not at all surprised that this is the dog I chose. Those who know me best know that my loyalty runs deep, so it makes perfect sense that I have always found myself drawn to the shepherd breed; a breed known for its fierceness and loyalty to its owner. Loyalty breeds loyalty, whether in a human or a dog; always remember that phrase, it’s very important. This dog is loyal.
     I have spent many years raising and observing my dog’s behavior. Dogs are truly like children. They listen when they want to, they are fond of “the look”, and they sometimes “bark” back. Sentry, like a child, has always had her nose stuck into whatever I am doing. She loves pecans and has quickly learned the fall routine of gathering them and then taking a much needed break to eat some of nature’s wonderful bounty. So much so, that I kept finding crushed pecan shells mixed with the meat (pecan) on the porch; her efforts at trying to provide for herself. I taught her predecessor to crack and peel his own pecans after finding the same mess on the porch so I decided that it was about time she learned to do the same. It is amazing how quickly they learn once you get them to just sit and watch what you are doing. She would look me in the face and then actually (for once) listen to me as I showed her to crack the pecan and then eat only the “meat.” Two pecans later, she was on her way to being self-sufficient in eating as many pecans as she possibly could.
     Sentry, for the past six years, has gathered (to my dismay) her own pecans and has been enjoying Mother Nature’s bounty all by herself. She has gotten so adept at gathering her own stash that when I wander out to the pecan tree with my bucket, she runs ahead of me to sit on her pile of pecans - which leads me to the question: Am I raising a dog or a squirrel? Now, if I can only teach her to share (wish me luck with that one-remember, a child?)
     She has also become quite friendly with a pony next door. They “talk” to each other. Being a dog, she does most of the talking and is the loudest of the two. They play their little game of running back and forth up and down the fence line. This particular game has been known to go on for a good twenty minutes or so at times. Each visit begins the same. First, she stalks her prey and then begins barking at an unbelievably loud volume. It amazes me that it doesn’t bother the horse. Then they run and visit, just as happy as two small children, well large children.

     There’s another saying, “let sleeping dogs lie.” As I snapped this photo, the flash alerted her to my presence and off she trotted after giving me “the look” to find another less obvious place from which to guard me; the sentry is back on patrol.


  1. awesome Donna I did not know you wrote short stories. Keep up the good work. I am looking forward to reading more. keep them coming.

  2. Sentry is not only a girl of delicate taste (pecans!), but also is skilled as a nutcracker. Never in my life have I heard of a dog who could do this!

    I am a wildlife rescuer, sometimes tending orphaned raccoon babies put in my care. When they're old enough, we introduce them to pecans (fairly easy to shell for a raccoon). Fortunately there are a number of groves around here, so the babies' new passion for pecans is not TOO expensive to indulge. Most people make pies out of pecans. You and I make sure that furry friends enjoy them!

  3. People would be surprised at what dogs (and other animals) can do with their teeth and their tongues as instruments. Who needs a pie when you can feed them to the animals? Did I just say that?! Definitely re-thinking that one. Pie or animal? Ummmmmm......


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