Wednesday, December 2, 2009


It's been a funny week. Funny ha-ha, not funny strange, for the most part. Thanksgiving was a pretty good time. My sister-in-law, despite having a whole house full of guests, let me take Stella to her house on Thursday. Stella needed some kid time and it seemed like the perfect opportunity. There would also be dogs there but their owners made an executive decision to keep them away from her and/or the rest of the crowd. I was sorry about that but it was their decision to make. She had fun with the kids anyway and a few minutes after we finally got home, she collapsed in a way I haven't seen since her younger days.

On Saturday we found a new dog park that's fairly close to the house. Unlike Nashville, they haven't passed an ordinance to ban pit bulls from it yet which is great but it wasn't without challenges. First, there weren't any dogs there and when Stella goes into an empty dog park, she has no idea what to do with herself. Her nose is hyper-engaged which apparently renders her deaf so we always end up leaving. No ball tossing, no running around, it's like we're lost in a foreign country. I decided to take her for a walk and try again later on. When we came back there were two dogs, Midnight, a lab mix and Maizie, a beagle puppy who probably weighed oh, I don't know - five pounds. We stood outside the fence for a couple of minutes and both dogs ran over to greet Stella. They touched noses through the chain link and Stella did the play bow like she always does. We approached the gate and I watched the blood drain right out of the faces of the puppy's owners. I can't say I blamed them, I would've been concerned too. They stood up and walked straight over to us and asked me point blank what kind of dog Stella was. I sucked it up and told them the truth. I didn't want to but I also want people to learn that she's not scary or dangerous or bad. It turned out they were a brave young couple and when Stella headed off with the other (bigger) dog, they decided to stay. Fifteen minutes later, the beautiful and, as we were about to learn talented, Maizie was ready for her turn. She ran up and body checked Stella much the same way Stella does to the biggest dog in the dog park.

Never one to turn down a romp, she got up and launched off after the puppy. Cue the cartoon chase music. The next few minutes were hysterical. The five pound puppy out ran the pit bull. Turns out, she had moves. She'd dive under a bench and do a one-eighty, lie down flat and look at Stella, then take off running again. Stella loved it. L-O-V-E-D it and all four of us adults, paralyzed at first, were charmed right out of our brains. It was magical. It was like five hundred dollars worth of mood elevating pharmaceuticals, crammed into six minutes.

The photos below are from a visit to a different dog park. Stella had fun that day too and even managed to briefly engage a Husky (which hardly ever happens, they don't usually have time for her nonsense).

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