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Walkin'

Pearl is one miserable critter, and Buzz has become a pill-popping junkie lately.
On a walk in the woods recently, Pearl managed to stab herself while dashing around in the timber like the labradoodle she is. During our walks, especially the ones in the woods, her brain gets locked onto two words, “Oh boy!”
Something died over here, “Oh, boy!”
Something peed over there, “Oh, boy!”
Something moved, “Oh, boy!
These two syllables resonate in her head like an imbalanced wheel on the interstate, and she jumps around like a Nerf ball on springs. She doesn’t so much leap as she floats into the air. She’s able to do this because she’s 90 percent hair and 10 percent bone and muscle. Note that I didn’t offer a percentage as to how much of her is brain because that figure is too miniscule to bother a mention.
The wound was fairly superficial and probably would have healed on its own had it been on her chest where she couldn’t lick it, but the quarter-inch gash was in her tongue’s reach. Pearl is an obsessive licker and eater of many things that need not be mentioned here. She soon had the small sore licked to double its size, and out came the cone of shame.
From watching our other dog, Buzz, and previous dog, Spike, I can say that canines don’t take to the plastic cone, but after a day or two they begin to get used to it. The learning curve for Pearl was shallower however, and she was especially pathetic the first week she had it on. Like our other dogs, she tried to shake it off and then paw it off. She also stumbled a lot as the cone hit objects like the door frame or the stair step. What she did differently is walk into a wall and then freeze not knowing what to do. As I write this she has been standing perfectly still with her head butted into the wall for about an hour now. I wonder if there’s a world record she could break?
Sabra started giving our hound Buzz a glucosamine supplement about a year ago. He was 11 then– about 88 in human years– and becoming visibly stiff. The condition was shortening his naps from 18 to 16 hours. At first, Sabra was giving him the pills wrapped inside a pill pocket because she didn’t think he’d eat it otherwise. She mentioned that the pill pocket was more expensive than the pill. I pointed out that the way he gobbles down his food he’d probably swallow a golf ball if put in with his kibble.
I was right.
Since then he’s been put on a whole palette of pills, all sprinkled into his bowl. One, tiny and blue, is a decongestant to keep saliva from pooling in his throat, which makes him cough and hack like a chain smoker. Another, tiny and red, is to relieve pain in his joints. I’m not sure what the third one, white in color, does. Maybe Sabra tossed it in to complete the patriotic color scheme.
All was going well until I made the mistake of ordering his glucosamine off the Internet and purchased capsules instead of tablets. If offered in his chow Buzz brakes the capsules open and then fails to get the full dose so it’s back to the costly pill pockets.
Of course, Buzz loves the pill pockets and has become addicted to them. If I forget to give him his pill he follows me around the house giving me a “shame on you” look until I remember.
I’ve got to go now. While writing about Buzz, Pearl came off her point into the wall and begged to go outside. I’m watching her out the window and she’s using the cone to scoop poop up off the grass like a terrestrial baleen whale.
Wait until Sabra gets home.