The Life of a Working Dog

Some people arrive in this life with an innate sense of who they are and who they want to be.  Some dogs are the same way.  Larry came to us wanting to be a working family member.  A life of idle leisure does not interest him.  He needs a place to protect, borders to patrol, intruders against which to stay on guard.  He is our companion and he loves to be with us, but he is always on duty and on the alert.  Even when he first showed up here and officially lived somewhere else, he would stop by and spend time with me, always being on the alert for something.  When we finally caught on to “The World According to Larry” plan that he should live here with us, I approached his owners and they kindly agreed to let him become ours and stay with us as he so clearly desired.  Larry had already made his decision; the rest of the details were just us people figuring it out and getting in line with his plan.  Larry is a chill dude of few words, yet he manages to get his points across so well when you listen to him.

Recently Larry incurred an injury in the line of duty.  He saw multiple canine interlopers in a corner of the pasture, barely out of the woods yet, but he issued a fierce warning.  Not being a dog of idle threats, he then felt compelled to back it up with action and took off, exiting the fenced yard through a hole his sister/girlfriend Molly had dug for him.  (That love story will have to be the topic of another post.)  His efforts to scare off the interlopers must have been successful because Larry returned a while later, none the worse for wear that I could tell.  Yet he was restless and paced constantly so we took a closer look and realized one of his toenails was poking up at an odd angle.   It looked like he had gotten it caught on something –oh, like say maybe some chainlink he was trying to duck under while running?  Ouch!  Yes, it hurts just to think about.

The vet had to sedate him to work on it.  Sure enough, he had ripped the toenail off and then torn part of the nail bed as well.  Big ouch, so no wonder he couldn’t settle down–he was in pain!  So we got antibiotics and pain meds and took him home to sleep it off.  Yet, being Larry, he has not lain in bed.  Oh no.  He has continued to patrol and keep guard.  His outer pinky toe has a raw, red wound where the nail should be yet he still has been outside keeping the premises safe for us.  If he took a day off, you never know if those pesky blue jays might decide to take over the yard or something.  It could happen, you never know!  😉



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