March 1, 2010

Jake Ties One On

Rich: News travels fast in the dog park circles. It's not just tails wagging there, it's tongues too. People tongues. Who needs the Internet? Matters big and small ripple through the people park from person to person faster than you can type, text or telephone your next-door neighbor.

Sometimes the news is shocking. Recently there was news of a fistfight between two dog walkers resulting from an argument over Abraham Lincoln's sexual orientation. I wish this weren't true, but it is. Not only do I not want to be drawn into future fisticuffs, but not being terribly conversant with presidential, um, preferences, I could be left out of future dog park conversations!

Sometimes the news is just plain dumbfounding. For example, news came that Jake's green bandana had gone missing. Dumbfounding because Jake's been hanging on the right-hand side of The WoofGang's homepage for a year sporting green neckwear. It was his signature. What's worse, Marcia, Jake's mom, was unable to find a replacement bandana in the right shade of green in every store she tried. What would Jake do?

Enter Jane. A few days ago I mentioned to her that I'd seen poor Jake wearing a red bandana in place of his dashing green one. Jane nearly jumped out of her chair, rummaged through a stack of stuff, found the very green bandana she'd decked Daisy in for Christmas, and stuffed it in my coat pocket. "Next time you see Marcia," she said, "give it to her."

I'm pretty sure I was the only person to arrive at the dog park this morning with a bandana (of any color whatsoever) in my pocket. Explaining the camera dangling from my neck, I told Marcia, "I want to document the moments before and after Jake gets his new bandana."

This is one of the last pictures taken of Jake before he donned his new colors:

At first he wasn't too sure this was a good idea. It's been a while since he tied one on.

This one was tied to stay put.

He liked it.

He especially liked the attention of the paparazzi, posing for this mug shot.

Alas. With the sudden celebrity came jealousy, and Jake knew it. Once the thrill of the moment faded, Jake became wary that the other dogs, like Jenny here, wouldn't stand for his commanding all the attention and might soon make plans to acquire a certain green bandana of their own.

But with Jake's speed and elusiveness and Marcia's careful adjustments, his bandana remained safely in place.

Jenny let Jake enjoy his moment.

It wasn't long before the memories of the Jake without his dashing green bandana were all but forgotten and the walking was good again.

I expect the walking will be good and the talking will be better in coming days. You miss a day, you miss a lot.

February 22, 2010


He's black.

She's white.

He finds things to carry in his mouth.

She takes them away.

He poses.

She won't stand still.

He's a landlubber.

She swims.

They share some bad habits...

and some common interests.

They fight like brother and sister.

Is it any wonder they're best friends?

February 15, 2010

Off The Beaten Path

Rich: With Jane out of town the last few days (in Florida, where else?), Boomer, Daisy and I had a chance to explore parts of the world we've never explored before. Always a lot of fun. The sun was shining, the snow gleaming and we were very excited.

When we go off path, we don't know what to expect. Like these weirdly tall weeds we found:

Could that be a hill? In Illinois?

I didn't think the Booms would ever stop staring.

Daisy hung by the water.

As usual.

And to top off the day, we got the money shot:

February 8, 2010


Rich: Find a stick:

Find a friend:

Share the load:

January 18, 2010

Water Walking

Rich: Winter lets us see water in all its forms, sometimes all in the span of a day. There it is, everywhere, beautifully presented. Sometimes it flows, like the water in the west branch of the DuPage River.

That's the kind of water you can play in, if you're of such a mind as Daisy was today.

Many times, it's disguised as snow.

When you walk in this snow water, people are going to know where you've been.

And in the mornings, it comes as a mist, like yesterday when a dreary fog enveloped the trees in the distance.

Water doesn't do straight lines; it moves in curves and waves.

YakTrax come in handy when the going gets icy.

January 11, 2010

We're Not In Cocoa Beach Anymore


Rich: I didn't want to get out of bed. I really didn't want to get out of bed. I really really didn't.

But somehow I did.

It was a dark and snowy morning, at least a half hour before sunrise. I stuffed a point and shoot camera in my pocket, grabbed the leashes, and off we went - Boomer all crazed about the falling snow, Daisy all crazed to be awake and me, just plain crazed.

In the darkness, the camera flash caught snowflakes in mid-fall. Something told me we were a long way from Lori Wilson Park, subject of last week's post. Maybe it was the frostbite.

Now that we're back, I'm glad we went.



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January 3, 2010

Where in the Doggie World?

Rich: On New Year's Eve, I returned from my ninth trip to Florida in the last twelve months. Two of these visits were road trips that included Jane, Boomer, and Daisy, too. Those were the pleasure trips.

We discovered and quickly came to enjoy Lori Wilson off-leash dog park a few miles away from where we stayed. It's a great park filled with friendly people and terrific dogs. (More on that topic in future posts.)

Maybe you can guess where it's located if we provide a few clues:

1. From Lori Wilson dog park, on a clear day you can see space shuttles coming in for a landing. One day while Boomer and Daisy romped, we spotted one such landing. The shuttle came into view after two sharp sonic booms announced it. Wow!

2. Lori Wilson dog park is located on a street with the strangest name, as you can see below:

Now you know where the park is in Florida. Right?

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"Daisy, are they clean yet?"

Happiness Is . . .

Happiness Is . . .
a warm puppy named Daisy!