This week I innerviewed Duchess Davidson, an English Springer Spaniel (like me). An I just wanna say … WOOF! I mean, she’s got it Goin’ ON! She was right there at the door to greet me an my assistant, an she trotted over politely for the Wag-an-Sniff.
“WELLcome, Mr. Bonzo! I’m so very pleased to meet you in The Fur. I love your column. This is my Mommy, Wesley, an my Daddy, Sandy. Please, make yourself comf-tubble. Can I get you anything? Water? A liddle snack?”
She led us into the living room.
“Um, I, er …” I stammered. Her coat was soft as a bunny, snow white, an a pretty color humans call ‘liver,’ but I’m thinkin’ dark chocolate. She had a cool haircut, the back short, tummy, chest an legs longer an wavy. And when she walked away, it was like she was wearin’ dark chocolate pantaloons an fluffy white boots. Uh-DOR-ubble. Pretty face, too: big brown eyes, dark chocolate nose, an a beauty mark, like that human model lady. Her tail was bobbed, an her long, wavy ears were all different colors, with natch-rull highlights.
OK, I admit it. I was staring. Fiddling with my notebook, telling myself firmly to snap out of it.
“Right! So! Miss Duchess, tell me about your journey.”
“Well, up in New York state, Mommy an Daddy had Daisy, a German Shorthaired Pointer, an a Beagle named Duke. (All their dogs’ names start with ‘D.’) They’re up in Dog Heaven now. Then Mommy an Daddy moved here. Their frens had Springer Spaniels, which Mommy an Daddy thought were Totally Cool Kibbles, so they decided that’s what their next pooch would be. Their frens told ’em about Kensington Spaniels, in Hilton Head. Mommy an Daddy called an told ’em they wanted a liddle girl puppy, not a Show Dog, just a plain ol’ Family Dog. So the kennel put ’em on The List.
“Finally (it was ’09) the kennel called an said they had the perfect liddle girl. ME! See, I couldn’t be a Show Dog cuz of not havin’ a Full Collar, which means my fluffy white fur didn’t go all the way around my neck. ’Cept for that, I was perfect. So Daddy picked up my human sister, Leigh, at college (she LOVES dogs) an they drove up to the kennel. Well, they took one look at me (not to brag, but I was an Irresistubble Liddle Fluffball) an they Totally Melted. An I KNEW I’d found my Forever Famly. When we got here, I met Mommy, an my human brother, Graham. He was a great Big Brother. Helped me get used to my new home, the rools an stuff. He’s in Heaven now. I still miss him.”
“I totally understand, Miss Duchess,” I told her. “So, tell about your life these days.”
“Mommy says I was the Perfect Puppy. I didn’t whine, or chew stuff I shouldn’t. PLUS, I’m affectionate. An puh-lite. An smart. Me an Daddy have this morning routine: Daddy says, ‘Get the paper.’ I go out to the front yard an stand over the paper an Check Out the Day: nose to the breeze, inhalin’ all those cool morning smells. Then I pick up the paper and toodle into the TV room where Daddy is, with his cuppa coffee. He takes the paper an gives me a Treat.
“Another thing I love (you can probly relate, bein’ a Springer, too): Flushin’ Pheasants. Didja ever flush a pheasant?”
“Ackshully, no. Not yet,” I managed. “Umm, they’re birds, right?”
“Of course, silly!” she laughed. “You MUST try it. When we go to Fishers Island, on Long Island Sound, me an Daddy go lookin’ for pheasants. Not to hunt. Just to flush. We wouldn’t hurt ’em. The pheasants are scwunched way down in the underbrush, hopin’ we won’t notice ’em. But I always do. Stealthily I creep closer, then, POW! I spring straight up in the air! My ears fly straight up, too. Mommy says I look like one of those Wile E. Coyote/Roadrunner cartoons, like I’m onna trampoline. Well, you better buh-LEEVE those pheasants take off like their tailfeathers are on fire.”
“Pawsome!” I exclaimed, relieved to learn that flush didn’t mean what I had thought it meant. “Any favorite food?”
“Well, Mr. Bonzo, I must admit this one little food thing: Dead Sea Creatures. I find the aroma irrresistubble. Mommy an Daddy make sure I don’t ackshully EAT any, but I’ve come close. I’m tryin’ to get over it. It helps when Mommy gives me a peanut butter Kong. I also enjoy hors d’oeuvres. When we have a party, I love hangin’ out with the humans. If, perchance, there’s an hors d’oeuvre at the edge of the coffee table, I sneak up on it: I casually move in, approaching the table sideways. Then, when the moment’s right, I NAB it!”
“Rock on, girl! Any pooch pals?”
“At the beach, I run around with Eddie, he’s a terrier. Up at Fishers Island, me an my cousins Birdie an Rory hang out. Mostly, though, I’m a People Pooch. When we’re on walks, people are always stoppin’ to say how pretty I am. Same in the car. I sit in the front seat in my halter, lookin’ out the window. I specially love drivin’ through the Shenandoah. There’s cows an silos an stuff. But, when I see Daddy puttin’ on his loafers, that means they’re goin’ Out To Dinner an I hafta Stay Home. Which Isn’t FAIR. I lie on the couch an POUT. I won’t even look at ’em, cuz my feelings are hurt. But don’t get me wrong, I’m a totally lucky girl. Yummy food, lotsa toys. Cozy nests to nap in. Ribbons for my ears.”
I couldn’t buh-leeve how fast the time had passed. Heading home, I couldn’t stop thinkin’ about bunny-soft fur, an those big brown eyes. Sigh.
Till next time,