Thursday, December 30, 2010

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The Grass Is Always Greener...Unless There Isn't Any Grass

One of the things we are supposed to do with our guide dog puppy is encourage her to pee on many different surfaces: grass, gravel, concrete, tarmac, rocks. Her Royal Highness (HRH) Berkeley, of course, was partial to grass.

It is so cool and delightful to the paw, so springy. Why would any smart puppy choose to relieve themselves on another inferior surface? One that is scratchy and might even be smelly or hot to the touch? No, no. Best to stick to that cool, green oasis of restroom quietude. Thus HRH lulled us into a false sense of variety.

When we would go to a planter that had bark, she would slip ever so slightly near the grassy part and pee near it. When we would walk her in the gravel, all ability to pee would desert her.

"Why, sir, I cannot! Heaven forfend! It is not within me." The puppy eyes would commence and we would give up.

Thus Arizona was a BIG SHOCK to HRH, mostly because Arizona is a desert. There aren't any grassy bits in Arizona. In fact, Mom and Dad's back yard look a lot like the photo of gravel below.

HRH wouldn't go for almost a day. She kept walking around and around on her toes as if somewhere, hidden in the rocks, there was some grass. Maybe, over here, in this corner. No? Perhaps by this bush? No?

By evening, she was crosslegged and pretty sure we were in hell.

"This is the most inauspicious place to spend the holidays. Fortunately, the hosts are kind and have padded beds on which I can lie."

In the end, the rocks won. But I'm pretty sure unless she is in the desert, she won't resort to using them. She is, after all, HRH.

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