Poodle problems

My dog looks young and perky. She is still lean and bouncy. However she is 14, deaf, and foolish.

Once upon a time I could let her out in the back yard when we woke up in the morning and she would do her business and come back inside.  My yard covers a third of an acre, which seemed to satisfy her need for exploration. She stayed within its bounds, even though it’s only partially fenced.

Lately she’s taken to wandering. Bored after years of the same damn dogfood every day, perhaps she seeks some hapless workman’s lunch? Bored after years of the same damn yard, perhaps she seeks new vistas? Bored after years of the same damn owner, perhaps she seeks fresh love?

Today she went too far.  Dangerously too far – like all the way to the main drag a couple of blocks away, where she was trotting up the middle of the road.  A neighbor chased her home and rang my doorbell at 7 a.m. with Molly in tow.

Whatever her reasons, I have to put a stop to it.  Legally speaking, we have a leash law and she’s not on one during these early morning meanders. But mainly she needs to be protected from cars, and cars need to be protected from her. She doesn’t hear warning honks so she just muddles merrily along.

I’m beginning to see the writing on the wall. Either I stagger out with her at dawn (in the dark…and in the winter in the rain) or I get a long lead and tie her up in the back yard while I come to consciousness.  (I could just stand there with her but it often takes her up to ten minutes to find the perfect poop place – you could say she’s a picky pooper and as I’ve said, patience is not my strong suit.)

One of the challenges of owning a dog…

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