Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Puppy and the Treat

Ungus has definitely lowered the bar for "treats." I believe I have mentioned that braunschwager is my favorite treat, and that I learned all my best tricks when Dad used braunschwager for a treat. But Ungus? He'll do anything for anything! At least on a temporary basis. But he is just as likely to forget what he did to get the treat as he is to forget that he just got a treat. He thinks life is just one big treat-fest. He hasn't quite made the "do a good thing" then "get a treat" connection. I complained to Dad that I thought Ungus was getting more treats than I was. Dad explained that Ungus was "In training". I explained to Dad that I was "In retirement!"

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Humans and Dogs and Smelling

I know dogs have better noses than people. Even people admit to that. We can smell stuff about a gazillion times better. But what I don't get is our respective attitude toward some smells. Skunks smell really strong, sometimes, but they don't really smell BAD. Not bad enough to keep a dog from chasing the skunk. And if we get sprayed - its the people that think we smell bad and try to give us a bath in lemonade or tomato juice (now there is some stinky stuff!) Say a skunk comes by. I smell that he is there, but Mom is gagging and slamming all the windows and threatening to pass out, over just a little stink. And the cat just lays there as the skunk goes by - just says "yo." Dead things smell, but not bad enough to forestall a good chewing (and sometime eating - now that will get Mom in a tizzy!) Mom and Dad both like the smell of coffee. They sniff and sniff and say how good it smells, but to me it just smells like burnt wood - nothing appetizing there. But sometimes our noses agree, and I really can't figure out why. Mom and Dad opened up something really, really stinky today. Gus and I thought it was a mutant skunk or a dead giant squirrel or something. The smell was  - well... WHEW!! WOOF!! Gus and I zoomed into the kitchen to see what was going on. Mom and Dad said we just went "poof" at their feet, 'cause we got there so fast. We wanted to know what the incredible stink was!! Dad and Mom had opened - and I quote, here - a. "... forty-year-old round of Cougar Gold Cheddar Cheese." Holy Moley was that stuff stinky! GOOD stinky, and, though I figured Mom would yell AUGH and try to throw it out cause it smelled, so, instead, she and Dad were both sighing and "ahhh"ing and saying how wonderful it was! Now I know cheese. I like all kinds of cheese - even limberburger. But this was way beyond that, and Mom and Dad were loving it. They had crackers out and bits of toast and some fruits and were just living it up eating something I figured they would have tried to bury! Gus and I begged and begged and finally Dad took some crumbles and sprinkled our dry food with it. WOW was that stuff great. Dad said we could only have a little bit, otherwise we, ..."wouldn't poop for a week," whatever that meant. Anyway, I have learned that our noses really can agree on SOME things, that I figure are so smelly that Mom will try to throw it in the garbage. Say, is there any more of that cheese left, Dad?

Friday, August 19, 2011

The Poop Dance

There must be something wrong with Ungus' nose. He doesn't seen to be able to smell his own poop! Dad plays with us in the back yard - fetch, tuggie wars, hide and seek - that kind of stuff. Ungus gets so excited that I swear  his nose stops working. Dad will throw a toy for him to retrieve and he takes off like a bullet. He is supposed to go to the "corner" to poop, and usually he does - he caught on to that pretty quick - but sometimes he is just so fired up, though, he has to poop right in the middle of his mad dash after the toy. He poops as fast as he can and then zooms on after the toy. He grabs it and heads back to Dad as hard as he can go - right through the poop he just left! He doesn't give Dad a chance to PoopScoop it - he doesn't give it a chance to dry out. It would seem the "poop dance", as it has come to be called, must be performed as soon as possible, and with complete disregard for the consequences. He just "zooms" - right through it. Now, Dad will be the first one to tell you that if there are poop tracks in the house, he would much rather they be paw prints than his shoe prints - he says that is for, "... his own safety sake." Because of this apparent sporadic failure of Ungus' sense of smell, Mom has instigated a new rule. All paws and shoes are to be checked at the gate. I know she says, "all paws..." just so Ungus' feelings won't be hurt. But gee - its humiligrating to have my paws checked just 'cause Ungus is a wind-up toy with his spring too tight. There is now an "emergency paw bath" set up at the gate so Ungus can get his feet washed, just in case he did the traditional Highland Fling in the poop. I keep telling him to slow down, that Dad will let him have a "corner break," but he just gets too "puppy-fied" as Mom calls it. Well, we're headed out to the yard for exercise with Dad. When we come back, if you smell anything, it's not me!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dogs and your Carpets

We need to talk about rugs. Maybe you call them carpets, but they are all the same thing. Dogs think of them as an extension of grass, lawn, branches and weeds, and thereby need to be peed on, pooped on, chewed on, played on and slept on. People seem to have ideas about what rugs are, different than what dogs do. People think they are soft underfoot - yeah, well, OK, I get that. People think they are colorful. Huh? People thing they are nice looking. Well, anyhow, people think that rugs are lots of things, but none include peeing, chewing, pooping on or playing with. Sometimes they will go along with 'sleeping on' if you're lucky. Most of our house has floors made of wood, but that doesn't mean Mom and Dad don't like rugs. No, there are rugs all over the place. Mom calls them throw rugs, but really, I have never seen her throw one. There is a rug by the front door, there is a rug by the back door, there are rugs in front of every desk, there is a rug in front of all the fire places, there are rugs in front of the sinks, there is a rug by the bathtub [burrrrr - I hate the bathtub]. There are rugs all around the beds. There are rugs outside at the doors. There are even a couple hung on the wall. Mom says George Washington slept on one - I don't know what that means.

Dogs have another way of looking at rugs that people might not know about. Rugs can be signals. Signals to you about what dogs want. When I sit on the rug by the back door, Mom and Dad know that I need to go outside to pee. If I do that, and they don't notice, a "Woof" is permitted. Ungus can do the same thing, but he might not need to pee - he just might want to go outside to check that we haven't been invaded by aliens - but Mom and Dad really want him to sit on the rug by the back door only when he needs to pee - like I do. Sitting on the rug in front of the kitchen sink means, "My water dish is empty." Sitting on the rug on the patio means, "I want to chase a ball." Sitting on the rug by the TV means, "I would like a share of the peanut butter you are wolfing down." Sitting on the rug by the front door means,"The post has arrived." Sitting on the rug at the end of the bed means, "I need my g'night cookie and take a nap." The most important rug in the house, though, is the "feed me" rug. From this rug I can see the refrigerator, the pantry, the shelf with doggie treats on it, the stove, and the whole kitchen floor; I know when the fridge is opened, a treat jar is opened, the pantry is opened and I'm ready for the opportunity to zoom in on some accidentally (or in Moms case, sometimes intentional) tidbit that drops to the floor. Ungus sits on the "feed me" rug, too, but he hasn't quite figured out how important and powerful the "feed me" rug is. But he'll catch on. Check and see if your dog has a "feed me" rug, too. I'll bet he does. Ah Ha - Dad just dropped a piece of roast, ZOOM I got it! I'll let Ungus get the next one - if he's fast enough!

Monday, August 15, 2011

And how long is a Dog Year?

A short word about "Dog Years." They say that dogs age seven years for every year a human does. I really don't know that that means. Time is a strange thing in general, and even stranger from a dog's point of view. Sometimes Mom and Dad can go away and come back, and say, "I'm sorry we were gone so long." And another time Mom can step out to take something to the garbage can, and it seems like the same amount of time has passed. I am thrilled when they come back, no matter how long it seems to be. I am not worried about them not coming back, I just think it is great when they do and it requires lots of attention exchanges. When ever Mom and Dad go - no matter how long they seem to have been gone, their return requires much welcoming excitement! Ungus understands this completely. He gets ruffled when Dad goes into the bathroom. Ungus tries to get in to "rescue" him. I try to tell him that there is only the one door and that Dad is not able to climb out the window. We pretty much have him trapped in there, but Ungus still thinks we need to make sure, and waits. But about "Dog Years." To take the concept to the next level, just remember. When you say, "I'll take you out in just a minute, [insert your own dog's name here]. Or, "[insert your own dog's name here], I'll feed you in just a minute; It's really seven minutes to your dog, and thats a long time to wait to go pee or to wait to be fed.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Sir Barksalot

Our neighbors have five dogs. They aren't very big - none of them are as big as me - but then that's how dogs think. I think I am bigger than the Irish wolfhound down the street, but Mom laughs when I tell her that. I wonder why. Anyhow, the neighbors got a Jack Russell terrier a couple of years ago. He's OK, but barks all the time, 'cause no one taught him that you don't have to bark all the time, cause after about the fiftieth time you barked that you 'had breakfast', no one is listening.
Then they got him a girlfriend. She is bigger than he is. Kind of fluffy with a curly tail and sort of dirty blond colored. She is MEAN! She bit me once and Mom cooled her off. She never has tried to bite me again, though. Maybe she thought it was me. Ha ha! But she barks all the time, too, and believe me, none of it is as interesting as what she might have had for breakfast. And she thinks Ungus would make a good breakfast, so he stays away from her.
Then they had three puppies. They are OK, but now they are all five barking - all the time.  Maybe they just want more attention. Dad tells the joke about a guy whose neighbor's dog barked all the time. Finally he said to his wife he, "couldn't stand it anymore," and ran outside. He came back in a minute later. His wife asked what he had done 'cause she could still hear the dog bark. He answered, "I put the dog in our yard - we'll see how they like it!" Then everyone laughs. I don't get it.
Mom and  Dad teach us, barking is OK - important, even, but it should have a real purpose. Like, if a burglar is "... going after the family heirlooms." I'm not sure what the family heirlooms are, but I am ready to bark at anyone who tries to take them. Ungus still does not know exactly what to bark at, yet, and when he gets really excited his bark gets higher and higher until it is just a squeaky toy sound. It's particularly annoying when something ordinary startles him and he sets off with a round of barking and no one can figure out what he is barking at. I ask him and he says, "It Moved!" I say what moved? He says,"I don't know, but it was moving." Great. "Bark Bark barkbarkbark           BARK BARK BAARK! No, Ungus - the garbage collector is not stealing our stuff.  sigh...

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Ungus got his first "big boy" dog biscuit the other day. They are supposed to be too big and hard for puppies, but have you guys ever looked in Ungus' mouth? They could make a new "Jaws" movie with those. Mom was following him around, trying to be inconspicuous, checking to see what Ungus would do with the BIG biscuit. Ungus was watching her out of the corner of his eye. He went in the TV room, then the porch, then the office, with Mom tailing him. Mom called Dad and said, "I think Ungus isn't feeling well. He isn't even trying to eat his new biscuit." They kept on tailing Ungus through the house, him toting the biscuit that was as big as his head. Finally I asked him if he was sick and what would make him feel better? He answered, "I'd feel lots better if they would let me HIDE my biscuit!"

Monday, August 8, 2011

Ungus got into trouble. Again. We had all been in the back yard playing 'fetch'. Dad and I were ready to go inside, but Ungus wanted to stay out a little longer. By himself. He's usually pretty good. He only cries when he thinks someone needs to come and rescue him - by rescue, he means 'get a treat'. He does that because he gets a treat at the back door for coming straight inside like a good dog. Some times he runs right back out so he can run in again and try to snooker another treat. Sometimes it even works, if he times it right. Mom is such a sucker for a cute face.

We all work in a big office in our house. There is a 'picture window' there. I don't know what the picture is. It just a window that lets us look outside into the back yard where Ungus and I play. I don't think Ungus quite has it figured out, yet, that the yard we see looking out the window is the same yard we play in. He'll catch on someday. 

So, Ungus is out in the yard. Mom looks at him through the window and asks Dad, "What's he chewing on?" Dad didn't look up from his work, and said, "I don't know." Mom said, "Well, look! It's a dead bird or something!" We all looked out the window. Ungus had some brown lumpy crooked thing he was gnawing on. "It's a stick," Dad says. "No, it's a dead bird - euuuu!" Mom knocks on the window; Gus looks up and smiles and just keeps on chewing. Dad takes off for the back yard and Mom and I watch form the window. Dad gets out there and takes the thing away from Ungus using six gloves and one finger and a thumb, and I can clearly hear him say, "NO!"

It used to be a squirrel. I say used to be, cause it wasn't in that body, anymore. Mom calls it 'dead.' Ungus was chewing a dead squirrel - the lucky sap - how did he find it and I didn't - dead squirrels make great chewing?  OH! UH AHH - ER  Uh, I mean, Bad Ungus! I would never do that! We go outside. Ungus is still trying to get Dad to give him back the squirrel. I told him, Mom and Dad don't want us to chew on dead things, cause there may be something "wrong" with them. "Wrong how?" he asks. I didn't know. Mom says they could make us sick. Ungus asked, "How can anything that smells that good make us sick? And what do you mean, it's 'dead'?" I tried to explain to him, but I don't really understand it myself. Animals are there, and then they are not. Mom says they wait for us on the "other side," wherever that is. I bet it's pretty crowded there. We buried the dead squirrel in the rose garden. Dad used a shovel instead of letting me dig the hole. That is where Mom buries all the critters that have moved on. Some day, you won't be able to dig out there without hitting a skeleton, but Mom thinks they need a "proper burial." Ungus asked me if they would put him in the rose garden. I didn't know, so I just said "You're not dead." That seemed to satisfy him. But it kind of made me wonder.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Some doggie toys make a squeaky sound when you bite them SQUEAKSQUEAKSQUEAKSQUEAK. Its fun and really kind of satisfying while you are chewing on them. Mom says , "...they're annoying!" I pretend I don't know what that means. When Ungus gets really excited and tries to bark, he makes a noise like those squeaking toys. We have a toy Mom calls the alligator. I guess 'cause it looks like an alligator, but since I have never seen one, it's hard for me to tell. I had alligator when I was a puppy, I chewed on it some and it does have a great squeeky sound, but there were other toys I liked better, so when Ungus comes along, alligator is still just there in the toy box. Ungus seemed to really like alligator, and the first thing Ungus did was chew off all his toes. Then the end of his tail. then his lower jaw. During all this chewing, alligator is making that great squeaking noise I mentioned - the one that sounds like Ungus when he gets excited. Over the last few weeks Ungus has whittled away at alligator. Feet are gone, most of his head and tail are gone, all chewing accompanied by that great squeak.

Mom, Dad and I were in the office, working - my job is security - and there was a non-musical chorus of squeaking coming from the other room, part from an excited Ungus and part from alligator. Squeak squeak squeak squeak squeak squeak squeak squeak! SQUEAK. Then, strangely, the squeaks were together, sort of, like Ungus and alligator were both squeaking at exactly the same time. Mom looked toward the door as the yodeling squeaks continued.

Just then, Ungus staggers into the office, still squeaking like crazy. He was all foamy around the mouth like Dad looks when he is getting a trim on his chin (I was waiting for someone to yell "RABIES"). Mom made a noise, kind of like, "GLACHG" and rush to Ungus. Ungus thought he was in trouble (gee I wonder why) and tried to evade Mom, but she got him anyway. She pried open his mouth and said, "Oh! Ye cats!" though I don't know what the cat had to do with it, and stuck her fingers in Ungus' mouth. After a short lived battle, Mom won and pulled out alligator's squeaker that had gotten stuck really good on Ungus' teeth. Then he got his mouth washed out and a drink of water and he was as good as new. Alligator and all of his pieces, however, were put into the garbage bin, with much protesting from Ungus, who wanted his chew toy back. Mom said, "No! One close call per day, only" I guess that means she'd rather not have Ungus try and kill himself more than once a day. I did notice that Mom kept alligators squeaker, though. Sometimes, when Ungus is in the other room, she blows on it...    just for fun.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Why dogs don't laugh at human jokes

Dad has a joke he tells sometimes, just to be irritating, I think. Three legged dog - that means the dog only has three legs, not that is his name is Three-Legged Dog - although I guess it could be, 'cause no one seems to know what the dog's name is, and names are important to a dog. Anyhow, three legged dog walks into a saloon - OK, I don't know if you know how hard it is to walk on three legs, but the dog isn't going to just walk in. Try walking on one leg and you'll see what I mean - there has to be some hopping in there somewhere. OK, three-legged dog walks into a saloon - I hope you know what a saloon is, cause I don't. Dad says it is like a bar - well OK, I don't know what a bar is, either. Mom says, "Just think of it like a restaurant, but with no food and only things to drink that you can't have. Yeah - I know what a restaurant is. They are great places where Mom and Dad go inside and they come out smelling great and they have little white boxes of treats that they got while they were in there. I wish I could go in one sometime. OK - Saloon - bar - drinks I can't have - that clears it up. OK, Three legged dog walks into a saloon and sidles up to the bar. OK bar, again. Mom says a bar can be where you get drinks that I can't have, but it can also mean a thing like a tall table. OK gotcha. And people wonder why dogs aren't that interested in learning English as a second language. Right - Three legged dog walks into a saloon and sidles up to the bar. He stares at the barkeep... OK, wait, is this 'bar keep' or 'bark epp'? I guess it must be the guy who takes care of the tall table - other wise, I get the 'bark' part, but what's an 'eep'? Anyhow, Three legged dog walks into a saloon and sidles up to the bar. He stares at the barkeep and drawls, "... - OK wait, what is a drawl? Is that like a drool? 'Cause I have found out that most people aren't too crazy about drool, in spite of its obvious good qualities, so if he drooled at the barkeep, no wonder dogs can't get things to drink in bars. OK, Three legged dog walks into a saloon and sidles up to the bar. He stares at the barkeep and drawls, "I'm lookin' for the man who shot my paw"? And then Dad, and every one else laugh. Why do people think that is funny. I don't get it! If I don't get it, Ungus sure won't. He just asked me what a sidle was.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Ungus has a favorite chew-toy. Most people would call it a cat, but not Ungus. He thinks the cat is there just for his amusement and playtime. Now, I really don't know that much about cats. I know they save poop in perfectly good holes that a bone should be hidden in. Don't they know that Dad goes around with a "Pooper-Scooper?" That alone brings into question any other motives they might have. They are good at catching mice - almost as good as me, but then - geeech - eat them. They have strange hygiene procedures - they lick themselves squeaky clean all over, then go roll in the dust. At least I'm not a hypocrite - I just go straight for the dust! I am not sure what constitutes a smart cat, but I am fairly certain that our cat does not rank there. Mom says, "See that smoke coming out of his ears? Those are his two brain cells rubbing together." So, I guess that means our cat isn't too smart. He loves attention, though. He's always rubbing on people, furniture, rugs, ME! - anything to get petted or purr-worthy. I don't think Gus had ever seen a cat before he came here, and we have just the one. There are more around but Mom says they're 'feral" - I guess that means they only sneak food when they think no one is looking. Our cat is used to me. I was here when he wandered in as a scared, scrawny, tiny kitten. I pretty much ignored him unless he got in the way when I was chasing something else. Then I just bowled him over in my hurry, which was sort of fun in its own right. Ungus, on the other hand, took one look at him and figured he belonged in the toy basket! I think, in spite of his mental limitations, the cat has figured out that Ungus can't actually hurt him. So, when Ungus tries something, like chewing on the cat's ears, the cat gets all puffy and makes a rarrowgle sound and bats at Ungus with his paws. I know he isn't serious, though. Dogs have pretty good toe nails. They are designed so we can dig holes to bury things in, or dig up stuff that is already in a hole. Cats have toe nails, too, but they are sharp! Very sharp! And curved. And sharp! Dog toe nails are always in the same place, but cats can make their toe nails stick out. And they are sharp!. Or they can hide their toe nails somewhere inside their paws. It's sort of neat. And they are sharp! The cat always bats at Ungus with his toe nails hidden inside his paws. Otherwise, Ungus would have ribbons for ears and cry a lot - 'cause they are SHARP! Ungus has to be on a long, long leash when he is on the patio. When he comes inside, the leashed gets coiled up near the door. The cat seems to think this coil of leash is a good place for a nap. Ungus has discovered a neat thing. If he is careful when Dad hooks him up, the cat won't move. Then Ungus can take of at a dead run and the cat gets slid along on the coil of leash with his legs waving in the air until the leash all gets unwound. It's pretty funny. Then Ungus runs over to the cat and makes a rush at him. Cat is still dizzy from the leash ride, so he takes off and Ungus gets to chase him. Cat comes back in a couple of minutes, though, and he and Ungus go at it again. Pounce  rarrowgle Pounce  Feint  Slap  rarrowgle  Squeak Rush Bat PUFF Bark!         Sigh.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Ungus got into trouble.         *pause*           *evil chuckle*     "he he he". 

There is a middle school near us. We, and a lot of other Moms and Dads, go there with their doggies to play. It has lots of cool grass and a big fence all around, so even if Ungus get up a good head of steam, he can't go too far without conking into a fence. Sometimes there are even kids there to play with us. Ungus gets really excited when he sees someone, either doggie or human. He wiggles all over and wants to go and greet them. We were walking over at the school yesterday. They have a "track" that humans like to run on. They just run around and around - they aren't even chasing a ball or a squirrel or anything - they just run around in a circle. Go figure. This morning there were three little girls running around in a circle. They saw us and said, "Oh, what a cute little Scotty puppy!" Ungus wiggled his way over to them and they made a big fuss over him. He was in doggie heaven with all their attention. So much so, when Dad called him back to be with us, Ungus didn't come. Oh, the sacrilege! I don't ever remember doing that! Dad tried several times to get Ungus to come back to us, but he wanted to play with the little girls and didn't come. Finally the little girls walked over to us and Ungus trotted happily along with them. They all gave me a nice pet and told me I was a good dog. I didn't get the "Oh, isn't he cute!" greeting. but they told me I was a good dog and a nice doggie, and I'll settle for that. Meanwhile, Dad clips the leash back onto Ungus. The little girls go back to their circle running and when Ungus turned to follow them, he found he was leashed up. He tried to struggle after them for a moment, then realized Dad had him good. He whined and sniveled, but Dad said, "NO! You didn't come when called, so you can't be loose, right now." Ungus hung his head and promised he would never do it again, but it didn't matter. He had to stay on the leash all the way home. I sort of felt sorry for the little guy, hanging his head and dragging his little feet; staying right with Dad by way of apology. This morning we went back to the school. There was a lady running in circles and she stopped to give Ungus attention when he wiggled his way over to her. Dad called him back. He looked at the lady then at Dad, and finally came slowly back over to us. The lady laughed and said that we were, "... good dogs," and ran off. Ungus watched her go, then looked at Dad. Dad bent over and told him he was a good dog to "come" Ungus got all wiggly and flopped over to get scratched, and we walked on with no leashes. Maybe he will learn the "good dog" stuff, OK, after all. And maybe tomorrow, he'll get in trouble again and I'll get to chuckle again.  He he he.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

I asked Dad, "Why do we have to go on our morning walk so early?" He said that it is easier to teach Ungus things - read, 'good behavior', here - when he is hungry. His rewards mean more - are more memorable. Ungus' favorite treat is chicken jerky. Not that processed stuff - the real chicken in dehydrated strips. Dad breaks it up in tiny pieces and Ungus will do just about anything for a bit of that chicken. At least temporarily. Ungus is a big eater. He'll eat practically anything - and does. Bits of sticks, leaves and twigs, bark, paper, candles, anything that was once alive and now is dead, bottle caps, zombies (I don't even know what zombies are, but Mom says he'd probably chew on one), towel corners, ethernet cable (boy was Dad mad!), shoes, parts of rugs (usually rugs that used to be whole), little green apples (now that IS funny). He even likes regular dog food. Dry puppy food. From a bag! Mom says I was a picky eater. I didn't eat for three days when I first came to Mom and Dad. Mom panicked and thought I was going to starve! Thats how poached chicken got on the menu (HA!) I don't care much for dog food. I like people food better. For treats, though, where Ungus likes the chicken jerky, I like braunschwager. Whatever human invented that stuff, gets my vote! I love it. I learned all of my coolest tricks on the other end of a bit of braunschwager. I guess Ungus is just easier to please. At least that means that I still get all the braunschwager. What? Wait  WAIT!. No, Dad! NOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Monday, August 1, 2011

I hate water. I hate baths. I hate the sprinklers. I hate the rain. I hate getting wet - even if it is only two drops. Ungus, on the other hand, likes getting wet. He thinks it is fun to run back and forth through the sprinklers. He likes walking in the rain - the same rain that Dad and I try to avoid. He even likes getting a bath - though he does wiggle a lot, and I think he has a contest with himself as to how far he can shake the droplets off of his wet fur. I try to be in the other room when he gets a bath.

This morning the sprinkler was on in the upper garden. Ungus isn't supposed to go up there by himself. But he was all excited, for what ever reason- the wind probably changed or something - and when Dad came to get us from the back yard to go in the house, Ungus took off up the path to the upper garden. Most of the path is stone, but there are parts that are just dirt and when the sprinkler is on, they turn to mud. Ungus goes zooming up the path through the sprinkler and the mud - Dad called him back, and to his credit he did come. But then he went back. Back through the sprinkler and the mud. Back and forth about six times. When Dad finally got him out he was soaked and mud up to his tummy!

We have a big tub outside that we take baths in, in the summer. Dad fills it up with water in the morning, and by the afternoon the sun has it all warm. It wouldn't be so bad, if I didn't hate baths. But this wasn't bath day and Ungus, if he hadn't been black in the first place, sure was now. So in he comes to get a bath (I ran and hid). There were lots of splashing noises and gargling noises and wet slopping noises. Then silence. Then Dad says, "You can come out, now," to me. I come out and Ungus is getting a towel rub! I know it doesn't make any sense, but I love towel rubs, Yeah, I know. You only get them after you've gotten wet, and I don't want to get wet, just to get a towel rub. But I LOVE towel rubs! And Ungus was getting one. Finally he was as dry as he was going to get, so Mom let him go. He zoom-dried around the kitchen about ten times rubbing on everything and rolling and wiggling. I envied him the towel rub. Why can't I have a towel rub WITHOUT the bath? I was good, and didn't get muddy. It must have shown on my face. Mom beckoned me over. It might have been damp from Ungus' bath, but Mom gave me a great towel rub. Without the bath! Mom loves me!