Monday, July 4, 2011
Zippy's Excellent Adventure
For the holiday weekend I loaded up dogs and went down to cook out, work dogs, and spend the night with Robin, Julie, and Victoria. This was Pia's first road trip, and she did really well. I was pleasantly surprised.
Yesterday afternoon Robin, Julie, Victoria and I all took the bigger dogs down to the pond to hang out for a while. We sat under the trees while the dogs frolicked in the pond. Much fun was had - Ginger waded, and the border collies swam. Zippy inched up towards the pond, and then suddenly (I thought) he fell in!
I ran down there to find him just standing in the water. It was up to about his shoulders. Let me stop here to say that while Zippy has waded into a creek up to his brisket, he has never offered to get into a pond, and he's never gone in past his bread basket. Anyway, he appeared to be just standing there looking around. From the bank we could just see his ears swiveling back and forth.
Assuming he might be in distress, I walked down to the bank, got in his line of sight, and waved him to me. He crawled out, so I sat back down. Not thirty seconds later there he was in the pond again... standing... ears swiveling. The other dogs were splashing around him, and he just stood there.
I sighed, and went down to wave him out again. This time I encouraged him on up the hill... planning to go pick him up and move him away from the pond. That's when the little blighter took off running down the shore line towards the brush. He did an end run around me, and took off around the pond.
I just shrugged and went back to my chair. Fine. If he's that determined to play around who am I to argue with a 17 year old tiny dog?
A minute or two later he made his way back to the pond and quite intentionally went in. He was up to his withers in the water... just standing and looking. I'd say he stood there maybe 10 minutes that way until...
He started swimming. Yes, really. There was Zippy, out there tooling around the pond.
He could not get his face out of the water. He has some arthritis in his neck, so he was tooling around with his ears sticking out, but his face was under water.
So out into the pond I went. Fully clothed. I could see his little eyeballs, and I could see the air bubbles coming out of his nose. I grabbed him, and the second his little face cleared the water he started shrieking at me. Obviously he hadn't taken in any water. To add insult to my already soaked injury I got bogged down in the mud at the bottom of the pond and was having trouble getting out. My boots got sucked down in there, so I grabbed at the grass along the edge to try to help me get some purchase (all the while having a vocalizing Zippy under my arm).
Julie left the peanut gallery (which incidentally was practically falling on the ground laughing - I would have been) and helped pull ME out of the pond. I had to set Zippy down... and the minute his feet hit the ground the blighter took off running again.
Fortunately for me he got caught in the brush again, and Julie yelled "Quick! Grab him while he's stuck!"
I squished my way over there, snatched him up, and carried him back to the van. He yowled at me the whole way. While I toweled him off he yowled and flopped like a fish, and continued to voice his displeasure.
Clearly he was not finished having fun. But my heart couldn't take any more action, and I was out of clothes. He spent the rest of the day in his crate where he couldn't get into any more trouble.