Today’s post is a complete departure from my typical devotional content. But it’s been a while since I posted a “dog-blog” here at Life, Gratitude, Faith, & Passion.
Saturday afternoon, heading into the kitchen to make a cup of tea, I witnessed Scout Labradoodle submitting (under protest) to a much needed brush-out, and I thought, “This is too good to keep to myself.”
Good grief. What a scruffy dog!
Scout’s glory, it turns out, is also her greatest liability. Full, beautiful, flowing, thick, tangled, matted, dusty, grey-blue locks of love. Her coat is part dog-hair, part Velcro. The Velcro part picks up dust-bunnies, pine straw, pine cones, grass, leaves, acorns, livestock, and small branches.
In Florida Scout typically spent the majority of the year sporting a short haircut. Here in North Carolina we will be letting her keep her natural insulation at least until May or June. But, try as hard as we might, we’re still stuck with additional “de-matting” fees whenever she takes a visit to the Dirty Dog Spa.
VICTORY! One distinct plus for Scout here in North Carolina has been her recent (eight-months and going strong) victory over allergies. It’s coming at great expense – steroids, antihistamine, shots, and a specialized grain-free diet – but the success is a first in almost nine years, and she is much happier for it.
Her favorite roost is either inches from the roaring fire, or flopped at the top of the stairs, where she can monitor the family from one location, and decide if another journey down is actually necessary, or if she can simply keep an eye on things with the minimum of effort.
We’re fairly sure that Scout is aware of how well things have worked out for her, being attached to our family. She loves us with such completeness, such joy; and I swear that I can read a constant, heartfelt, “thank-you” in her eyes.
CONFIDENCE: Sometimes, when we return after leaving Scout alone long enough for some kind of misbehavior to break out, she will wait for us to come home, then quickly put herself in “time-out” when we walk through the door.
She waits for one of us to discover the misdemeanor, and doesn’t move a muscle till we track her down. Then, her body prone and perfectly still in the “bad dog” position, her tail will start to beat uncontrollably as she thinks about what she has done. She knows that our response won’t go any further than a stern word or two, and that love will win out in the end.
below – “grooming” photos from Saturday:
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there's always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor's degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men's Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.