Porch Living and Counting Cars
The Mount Dora Citizen is pleased to offer the story of the life journey shared between Glazer, the Boxer, and her family – as told by Glazer.
Having never cared for those indestructible pink bones, rings, etc., I had to find some way to pass the time. Since Mom and Dad worked, in the beginning Sara and I lived on a big porch during the day. Those people that made all the noise were actually building this big porch for us. We could lie out there on these nice cool bricks and sleep and play and Sara would play with those pink things that she couldn’t destroy. That’s when I learned to count cars, more out of boredom than anything else. What dog in their right mind would actually set out to learn how to count cars? First, it was just kind of something I slipped into, one car, two cars, and so on. Then, I perfected the art: Honda, Chevy, Toyota, Ford, and not just by sight, mind you. To this day, I can tell the difference in a 4 cylinder and an 8. Throw in a diesel, those are easy. Well, it passed the time and impressed my sister, for sure. Most dogs can only tell the sound of their parent’s cars, not me, I could pick them all.
Boxers are known for the use of their front legs. That is a fact, and some say, that’s why we’re called “Boxers”. I know I was much much better than Sara with the use of my front paws. Sure, she could hold a tennis ball between her paws while she was chewing it to smithereens, but could she open the door of her crate? I think not. If the weather wasn’t good for porch living, we had to stay in our crates. Having a house to call your own is not bad; in fact, most humans want to have one. No one wants to be homeless. So while going in our houses wasn’t all bad, it could also lead to that boredom thing. After much study, I learned that if you “paw” at that little slide on the door long enough you can move it to open. Eureka, I’m free! So, here I am free to roam the house, find all the garbage cans, sleep on the sofa, and poor Sara is still locked in her house. She could never figure it out. I suppose you’re probably thinking if I was such a good sister why didn’t I just open hers the way I opened mine, but I figured, if she’s such a smart Lab, let her figure it out. In my early years, I could get mom’s sunglasses out of her purse without ever disturbing another thing in there. Maybe I didn’t have very many toys to play with, but I could sure eat the arms off a pair of sunglasses. That particular bit of skill, I assure you, was not met with a great deal of enthusiasm.
Is it just me, or is there a Labrador on the cover of every hunting magazine and catalog, in toilet paper commercials, everywhere you look. What’s the matter with a Boxer, for crying out loud? We’re pretty, regal, adorable as puppies, and downright skillful in our areas of expertise. Every time my mom would want to buy us a dog bed, a car bed, a new bowl, a blanket, there would be a Lab in the picture. It was a good thing that I was so self assured, that this did not affect my personality. I thought, “Well, they just don’t get it, now do they?”
A Walk on the Beach
When I was very young, before kindergarten even, mom and dad took me to the beach to visit Uncle Tony and his then girlfriend (he’s had lots). Well, dad and Tony decide to take me for a walk on the beach before dinner. It was the most amazing thing, there was digging sand as far as the eye could see, there was water that moved, and there were a gazillion birds running back and forth with the water that moved. I was mesmerized, this was incredible, and throwing myself totally into the moment, I took off to chase the birds and the water. Somehow I must’ve lost track of the time and the location of dad and Tony. Eventually I stopped to play with some kids (even at that young age, you can’t resist playing with the kids), and whoa, dad was on me like white on rice. Since dad had thought that putting a leash on me was stupid, he had to carry me all the way back, and by that time we were almost in Jacksonville. Needless to say, I never got to have that kind of fun again all weekend. Mom put the leash on me every single time we went to see the birds. You cannot chase birds with a leash attached to a human, it just doesn’t work. Of course, I let her know at every available opportunity that I was most unhappy with this arrangement, but she didn’t get the hint. I don’t remember ever going to the beach again after that, wonder why?
The House on the Hill and the Invisible Fence
We live on a really big piece of property that goes either way way up to the green fence or way way down to the road. I do not know of one place that is flat, it’s either up or down, well there is one place on the driveway. The house is like that too, you’ve always got to go up and then you’ve got to come down. Stairs, they call it. My dad must have this vertical thing because he chose this property and he designed our house. Well, it’s a neat place. We have lots and lots of oak trees that throw down acorns in the fall. I’ve bit into a million of those things over the years and have yet to find one that has anything good to eat inside. I keep thinking that surely someday there will be an M&M in one of them. The oak trees keep it cool and you can sure dig a hell of a hole under the shade of an oak. Makes for some nice afternoon naps. Sara and I learned, however, that the freedom to lie under the oaks came with a price. An invisible fence, you can’t see it, you can’t smell it, sometimes you can hear it, but you sure as heck can feel it. We got lots and lots of “training” which was pretty hysterical. Mom and dad walking around with these collars in their hands, saying “Can you hear it? Is it beeping? Should I touch it? Is this where the line is?” I thought for a while that we would have to train them because we could surely hear it beeping. After a while we got to wear the collars, and it was pretty simple: you see a flag, you hear a beep, you turn around. I was an extremely quick learner about that fence. I tested it once, and once only. Levitated all four feet off the ground and that was enough for me. You take two steps after you hear that beep and you’re done for. Sara let a squirrel or two lead her into temptation, but I guess she was going to retrieve them.
Next week…Glazer’s story continues, beginning with “Gender”
Marilynette Cox, Guest Columnist