Personal Note: Maddie’s very first blog! First published June 23, 2009 – our first year as island summer residents. ____________________________________________________________________
Hello – Maddie here.
I hope all of you folks out there who read Mom’s blog are happy to hear from me – finally. I think Mom told you that I had been working on this thing for some time (in between everything else I have to do around here to keep the premises safe). Somebody has to make sure we aren’t going to be attacked by squirrels or chipmunks or snakes – and it sure isn’t going to be that big furball I am forced to share Mom and Dad with. All he’s good for is to prance around and look good. You should see him right now – lying at Mom’s feet with every long, golden hair in place. Well, let me tell you something – he stinks! I can’t wait till Mom takes him off island on Thursday for another bath and to get groomed. I know he told you about that bath he had down at the horse shower. Mom’s good at a lot of things, but bathing 90 lbs. of dog in a shower built for a Clydesdale in front of an audience is not one of them. He smelled a little better (at least our company didn’t gag when he came around), but he needs to go to a PROFESSIONAL.
OK – back to me. Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat. I am a dachshund. I know that is hard to spell – even Mom has to look it up in that big book of words every time she uses it in this blog. I am NOT a weinie dog, a weiner dog, a hotdog, or a doxie. Do you think puffball would like to be called a GOLDIE? He is a golden retriever. I am a dachshund. I have papers to prove it – maybe not as many papers as goofy, but papers nonetheless.
I have two houses to take care of – one in Georgia and one up here where it’s still freezing even in June – ok it’s not freezing, but I do not have 17 tons of hair like the monster does – I have very short, shiny brown hair that nobody has to professionally take care of – I am a very low maintenance dog. A couple of baths a year (in the bathtub at home, not at a fancy, spancy salon) is all it takes to keep me looking good.
In Georgia, we live on a lake, and the yard is fenced in, front & back. Therefore, when the door opens, I am free to run around outside to my heart’s content. I can chase squirrels and ducks and birds (wish I could fly!) and dig up moles and catch mice (Mom says I must be half-cat), and hunt for snakes. I know Mom told you about me going after that copperhead in the yard in Georgia. I had it handled, but Dad says he saved my life. I still say I had it handled.
Then there was that time when I was tracking that big black snake that lived in the bushes outside our front door (in Georgia). I was barking like crazy (something I am not allowed to do up here because of the neighbors). Mom came out and was trying to get me away from the bush (she doesn’t much like snakes), and that snake dropped right on her foot. You should have heard her scream! I jumped right in there and grabbed that snake (Mom said it was at least three times longer than me), and whipped it around my head like a lasso. Then I threw it down as hard as I could (you are thinking I am making this up, but you can ask Mom). We all thought it was dead, but it was only dazed. It crawled off, and our good neighbor at the lake (who doesn’t care if I bark) came over and took care of him with this big stick that goes BOOM (Dad was not at home at the time).
Ok – enough about the lake. Mom told me to write what I like about living on Mackinac Island. So, here’s my list: 1) There are no poisonous snakes on this island. So, when I spot a snake and go after it, Mom and Dad don’t worry so much. 2) There are chipmunks! They look like little squirrels with shorter tails. 3) There is a chipmunk AND a snake that live under the boardwalk at the condo, and I love to hunt for them – I have even named them. The chipmunk’s name is appetizer, and the snake’s name is entree. 4) There are the biggest squirrels I have ever seen here. The one who lives in the tree outside our living room window is black – our squirrels in Georgia are gray. The squirrel’s name is dessert. 5) We have more “quality” time with Mom and Dad here because we go on walks. In Georgia, they just open the door and let us out. Here, because we don’t have a fenced in yard, we have to be walked so Mom and Dad have to go with us.
Now, here’s my list of things I don’t like about the island: 1) I have to wear a straitjacket. You see, when I walk on a leash, I like to pull because there are always things to check out. With just a collar, I ’bout choke myself to death. So Mom ordered this harness-thing that puts the pressure on my chest instead of my neck. Looks like a straitjacket to me, but now at least I don’t turn blue on walks. 2) I can’t run free (see above). There are leash laws here, but I have a flash for you. They let dufus walk around without his leash. We live near the woods, and once they have us on a wooded path, they let him go. Now they say they can’t do that with me because I would run away chasing everything that moves. And I won’t come back when I’m called, like that crazy dog does. I mean, look at what my options would be – chasing a rabbit vs back into the straitjacket. What would you do? The only time I am semi-free is when we go to Turtle Park. It is this huge, open area, and they will let go of the leash handle and let me run around. They think that leash and handle will slow me down enough that they could catch me if they had to – pleezzee! I LET them catch me just to keep them from freaking out. 4) Walking downtown with Mr. Personality and Mom and Dad. We can’t get three inches without being stopped by a crowd of folks saying, “Ohhhh, what a beautiful golden retriever! Isn’t he gorgeous? Isn’t he so well-trained? Isn’t he just like ours at home? Isn’t he just like the one we had when we were growing up? Come on, big boy, give us a kiss!” You know what I want to say? “Yeah, go ahead and get those kisses all over your face, and then I will tell you what he just picked up off the street and munched on.”
Actually, I think the island is pretty neat. I love going in the woods, even on a leash because there is so much to explore and so many new smells to check out – other dogs, horses (who last year I thought were big dogs until I challenged one and got to see close up the biggest paws I have ever seen – and their paws have iron shoes on them), all kinds of wild animals, different plants, different trees – everything is so exciting (even in my straitjacket). I also love the ferries and the buggies. When we are going off island, I get to sit in Mom or Dad’s lap so I can see everything (and don’t get in people’s way). How cool is riding in a buggy behind a team of horses and pretending that I’m the driver!!
And, I have to admit it, sometimes downtown, stinky breath gets ignored and people lean all the way down and say to me, “Aren’t you the sweetest thing! Dachshunds are my favorite dogs. We have two back home, and we miss them so much! You are so cute! You are such a happy girl!” So I give them kisses – and stick my tongue out at the big blonde dog.
Ok – I guess that’s about all I have to say today. If you like my first blog, be sure and tell Mom, and she will let me know. I have lots more I could tell you! I hope I get more fan mail than bushy tail. That would make me VERY happy!
P.S. I forgot to tell you that Dad calls Bozo his “big-headed boy”. He calls me his “precious, sweet little baby”. What does that tell you, Goldie?