Ghosts, Warlocks and Witches Oh My!

Yesterday when Doc and I were taking our daily walk, we came upon some some interesting new people that have moved into the neighborhood. I don’t want to seem judgmental, but they were a little odd in an interesting and scary kind of way. I was certainly surprised that they had set up a type of camp in the front yard of one of our neighbors houses and were standing over a big pot of something that they were cooking. I am not a lawyer, but they have to be violating some type of city code and I was surprised no one on the street seemed upset by this, so I decided to take matters into my own hands and do an investigation under the dark of night.

Later that evening, when Doc was sound asleep, I slipped out the back door and snuck up the street being careful to stay in the shadows so that no one would see me and tell Doc I was running around outside alone. As I got closer to the house I could see that off in the distance that there was a fire under the pot and the three women were bending over the cauldron, furiously stirring whatever they were cooking. As I hid behind the tree so they could not see me I could hear them doing some kind of chant in a language I did not understand. Obviously they were not from around here originally, but I decided to move forward and befriend them as Doc has always taught me to be kind and welcoming.

As I came out from behind the tree and let out a friendly bark to let them know I was there, they jumped up and shrieked like I was a monster approaching them. I started wagging my tail and they seamed to calm down a bit and they turned and smiled. The first thing I noticed was that all three had missing and blackened teeth. Not to be rude, but they could use a good dentist.

It was quite eerie when they suddenly started talking to me and when I responded they could understand me, because no one up until this moment, could understand me besides Doc. They told me they were visiting from out of town and had flown in the other day just for Halloween. When they came near me they started looking me over and asking me how much I weighed and remarked how meaty and tender I seemed. When they looked at each other with knowing glances, I started to shiver because I was worried they were thinking about adding me to their pot of stew. Just as they leaned down to grab me I made a fast getaway and was running down the street for the house when I saw Doc frantically running toward me in her robe and slippers. As I was panting heavily, all I could say was ”Help me Doc, those three women up the street tried to grab me and cook me!” ” Grover, where have you been, I have been looking all over for you?” ” I was just trying to be friends with those strange ladies up the street.. I think they are witches!” I said with fear still in my voice. ” Grover, don’t try to make up tall tails to get out of being in trouble. you know you aren’t allowed to be out alone at night. Those witches aren’t real, they’re fake Halloween decorations. What an imagination you have. Now get in the house.”

Soon we were settled in and I snuggled in bed right next to Doc because I was still scared. You won’t ever see me go out at night alone again, you can be sure of that. I learned my lesson. I don’t care what Doc says, I now know that strange things can happen happen at night, especially near Halloween.

Taking Care of Doc

There are times in life where the roles with the people you love can become reversed, and last Friday was one of those days. I became the caretaker and Doc became the patient and if I had known how non-compliant she can become I would have declined the job from the start.

Early Friday morning, Doc’s niece picked her up to take her for a minor medical out-patient procedure that required that she be placed under anesthesia for awhile. I stayed home and napped until I heard the garage door open at about 11am. In walked Doc still feeling a bit groggy from the medication. She had been given strict instructions before she was discharged to take it easy, not drive or make any major decisions for 24 hours. Her niece, that also happens to be a nurse, told her to follow the discharge instructions, get in bed and stay there until she got back from filling the prescription the doctor wrote for her. I just rolled my eyes knowing Doc was not about to follow all those instructions. But just in case, I decided to lay down right next to her hoping by some miracle I could control her until her niece came back.

After about ten minutes had passed, Doc looked at me and said ” I think I’ll put in a load of laundry, that’s easy enough to do.” Oh Boy I thought to myself, ‘Here she goes.” She seemed content after she started the laundry and was quiet for a while longer, but I could see her brain thinking about all the things that needed done and one by one she checked things off her list until her niece texted her that she was on her way over with the prescription. Doc immediately got back in bed and swore me to secrecy. ” Wasn’t it you who told me that there are some secrets that we should not keep? ” I asked with some sarcasm in my voice. ” This is not the time Grover!” she snapped back at me. I could have sworn I also heard her say something about snitches getting stiches” under her breath but I probably misheard her.

The rest of the day and night were uneventful as her niece was keeping an eye on her. By 8pm Doc was bushed and she fell sound asleep. She stayed pretty quiet on Saturday because frankly I think she wore herself. I thought my caretaking role might be getting easier, until she let me out that evening and she noticed one of the flood lights had burned out. ” Oh No ! I thought to myself, because I knew what was coming next. Luckily it was dark so I knew nothing would happen until the next day.

On Sunday the worst came pass, Doc after having a surgery to help correct vertigo, though it was a great idea to get out a ladder to put up on the side of the house and climb up to change that burnt out light bulb. I had had enough with her non compliance and frankly now she was attempting death defying tricks that could really hurt her. So I did what any good therapy dog would do. When Doc wasn’t looking I noticed that my next door neighbor had his side door open and I could see him watching TV, so I went over to the fence and barked loud enough and long enough that he turned around to see what Doc was doing and came running out of the house to help. He was so nice in how he approached her that she didn’t even fuss at him and allowed him to help her. Crisis averted.

Later I was remembering how Doc always talked about her dad doing things when he was older that he shouldn’t have and how it scared her, and here she is doing the same thing. I guess its true that the apple does not fall far from the tree. As for this dog, I think I should be awarded some hazard pay.

It’s now Wednesday morning, we are at work and things are back to normal, but I still need to have a talk with Doc. I want to remind her that it’s ok to let other people care for her and to ask for help when she needs it. A life lesson many of us can probably work on.

The Case of the Visiting Hedgehog

Doc is rarely surprised by the things that show up inside our house, as most of the time she knows where they came from. That was until the other night when a strange unidentified object showed up for a visit.

It was just after dusk and Doc had taken me outside to use the bathroom before bed. She had just taken off my leash, kicked off her shoes and was walking into the family room when she stopped dead in her tracks and said out loud ” What was that I just stepped on, Grover do you know what this thing is?” As she bent down to pick it up and examine it, I pled the fifth and went on about my business like I didn’t know a thing.

Having a mind like a detective, Doc starting gathering clues. She first concluded that I didn’t pick it in when we were outside or it would have been moist from my saliva, but instead was dry as a bone. It was kind of dark so she assumed that I had chewed the cover off of one of my toys and left the center squishy part. That only worried her that I had ingested the rest of it. ” Grover I hope you didn’t swallow that.” she said with concern. She then took the unidentified object and threw it in the trash. ” Oh no, not the trash!” I thought to myself. What Doc didn’t know was that that thing she threw away was very precious to someone we both knew. It’s as if she had read my mind when she suddenly went back in the kitchen and got the thing out of the trash and laid it on the counter to be forgotten about until morning.

The next day Doc decided it looked like some ratty old dog toy so she did what any good dog mom would do, she took a picture of the sorry looking critter and sent out a text message to all the dog owners on the street that said, ” By any chance does this creature belong to anyone’s dog? I found it inside my house and I don’t know how it got here or where it came from.” It wasn’t long before she got a reply. ” Yes that is my dog Frankie’s Hedgehog that he spends hours sucking on every day since he was a puppy. I wonder how that got in your house?”

The next day Doc and I went over to return Frankie’s precious toy and he was overjoyed to get it back. I got tickled listening to the humans try to figure out how it got in our house like it was a case on the TV show Unsolved Mysteries.. Frankie and I both knew the answer to that question but we just looked each other and stayed silent.

Later on in the day, Frankie and I met over by the fence and chuckled over the whole fiasco. You see, a few weeks ago when Frankie and his brother Norman came over to my house to play, he had brought the Hedgehog with him and Doc never noticed. We got busy playing and he dropped it and it went under one of the chairs in the family room that swivel. On the day it reappeared, Doc had moved that chair enough that I was able to retrieve it and I left it on the floor where she stepped on it in the dark. Now, it will always remain a secret between friends. Our humans don’t need to know everything.

The Glorious Days of Fall

Well, it’s that time of the year when mother nature sends us signals that she is preparing for her long winter slumber. There is a nip in the early morning air, the days are getting shorter, the leaves are starting to turn and humans are obsessed with putting pumpkin spice in everything they eat or drink.

Nothing is better than a cool autumn day. Why just yesterday, after Doc was done mowing the lawn, she plopped down next to me in the grass and we lay in the warmth of the sun while gazing at the crystal blue sky above us. It was if neither of us had a care in the world. These are the moments in life you almost wish could go on forever, a snapshot in time to record in your memory.

Fall is one of this dogs favorite seasons. Gone are the heat and humidity that make my paws sweat. The cooler days have put a pep back in my step and that means longer walks with Doc, my favorite thing. How could you not love fall? It’s as if nature has been saving up all it’s beauty for the grand finale of the year.

So savor the days of autumn, get outside and roast a hot dog and some marsh mellows over an open fire. Take in every beautiful minute and don’t forget to share one of those hot dogs with your favorite canine.