November 10, 2011 § 2 Comments
As you can probably tell–I’ve had this site since July. For whatever reason I had decided that a nice outlet during haying season would be to write about ranching, cattle, dogs, horses and whatever else tickled my fancy. So silly. I had the best intentions, I really did…but when one is out of practice and not writing–is it of course extremely difficult to just pick it up and go.
Especially during haying.
Probably more than anything: Scout. Or: Scoutie, The ScoutBall, Scout McBall, Demonspawn, You little #^!$#&!!! and other assorted nicknames.
At lot of normal people have children. People who don’t care about their sanity, their homes and property have Blue Heelers.
Normal people post things on Facebook about their gorgeous children, the successes, cute things they do, darling Halloween costumes, and take pictures of the pictures they’ll have on their refrigerators.
We post about: Scout. Near-death experiences, vet bills, dog puke, and more dog puke.
I’ve been told a few times that I ought to write a book about Scout and our adventures. That friends and family enjoy the “Scout-Posts” for a daily dose of “Thank God We’re Not Those Guys”. Well…this will have to do for now.
Read on for the adventures of Scout: EPISODE I
Before I get too far: I know that having children can be exasperating, demanding, frightening, and the most important under-taking any single person will take on in their lifetimes. I get that. I am around enough children and their parents to know that for all of the peaks of triumph there are as many valleys of terrifying trips to the ER, or sick babies who can’t tell you what is wrong–but will cry the entire time. This is my disclaimer: Parents, I can’t speak directly to the joy and pain of child-rearing–but I think Carrie and I can come damn close.
Enter the Scout
I really have only myself to blame for this one. Carrie was I would guess: 75% opposed to getting another dog, but she let me do it anyway. Such is the give and take of a marriage I suppose. Well, she was right–and I should have known it the day I arrived at the ranch in Wyoming where I got Scout. No more than 10 minutes down the lonely, snowy, endless gravel road after picking him up he was a yowling, screaming, crying mess. It was–of course–expected. He’d just left his home, his mother, and litter mates. He was in a crate with a strange guy, in a weird machine that was moving.
His crate has two doors. One “normally” positioned, and another on the side. In loading the crate I had put the door on the side toward the backseat. I didn’t really have a way of seeing into the crate while driving, so we stopped. I figured maybe he had to pee, and while doing such I would switch his crate around so the side door was toward me. Easy enough.
Scout hit the ground, and immediately began running. Where–I do not know. Fortunately for me, he was 7 weeks old, and not very fast. Relatively. He was still moving out. I was able to gain on this ball of fuzz–and get him turned back toward the car–where he immediately went underneath the running car, and turned toward me. Every move I made to grab him–he countered. I went left–he went right. I went toward him–he backed up.
Thank God no one drove by. I can only imagine the Wyoming rancher seeing my Subaru Outback, Missoula plates, doors open, and me belly-crawling underneath the car to capture my…puppy.
Fortunately: That was the only incident for the next 8 hours.
Aside from the 8 hours of howling, crying, scratching at the crate, and intuitively gaining volume as the car stereo did.
I consider myself pretty learned about dogs. I grew up with them, I’ve had them as an adult. I’ve trained them, been bitten by them, ridden them (really!), cuddled them, watched them die, and have watched them being born. I can’t imagine my life without dogs, and frankly: not sure if I would want one.
Now, there has been–and will be a lot of sentimental dog related stories. It’s just what we do–we crazy dog people. This story is that, and more since Scout is probably the f$#@ing devil in dog form.
He is nothing like my Labrador, Gatsby.
Some of you know her–some of you don’t. She’s quiet, sweet, and will sleep 17-20 hours a day.
Gatsby wags her tail against the wall when she wants her breakfast where, Scout will jump on your: face, testicles, breasts–whichever body part you’ve left unprotected while sleeping.
Gatsby plays fetch, where Scout plays HERE’S YOUR F#%&ING STICK, BRO–THROW THAT SHIT AGAIN.
Gatsby walks calmly on her leash, meandering down the trail for a nice hike. Scout wraps his leash around his body, bites it, jumps at it, and a “nice hike” to Scout is approximately 89 miles of uphill climbing.
Gatsby ignores other dogs at the BarkPark and plays by herself. Scout is strapped to an upright gurney with a Hannibal Lector mask on so he doesn’t kill other peoples’ pets.
Gatsby gets a new toy, and lovingly slimes it–for years. Scout gets a new toy and rips its guts out, eats the stuffing, and leaves a soulless, shell of a toy–in seconds.
In a phrase:
We were not prepared.