This week I innerviewed another aMAZing pooch who leads a really fun, excitin’ life. Olive Caza is a Dalmatian and one of the most ek-ZUBER-ent dogs I’ve ever met.
She ran right up for the Wag-and-Sniff. “Oh, Mr. BONzo, you’re finally HERE. I’m SO excited. I’ve been waiting an waiting! Not that you’re late or anything. I’m just really EEEger is all.”
She was super pretty, sleek an shiny, with long legs an tail an, of course, lotsa spots, even one spot smack in the middle of her forehead shaped like a heart!
“This is my Mummy! Her name’s Annie. My Daddy’s David. So come’on. We can sit right HERE, OK? You’re gonna ask me stuff, right?”
“Exactly, Miss Olive,” I said. This was gonna be fun.
“Cool Dog Biscuits! Oh an I should mention, first off, my Mummy’s French, so we say my name Ooo-leeve, not AH-love.”
“Ooo-leeve. Got it,” I said. “So tell me about your Forever Family, how you got together.”
“K. Well, Mr. Bonzo, we almost didn’t. I’m from a breeder in Georgia. All us littermates were named after Olympic champions: You know, humans who are really, really good at sports. My litter name was Picabo Street.”
“Huh?” I said cleverly.
“She’s a human who won a gold medal for puttin’ long stick-thingys on her shoes an zooming down a big hill with snow on it. Anyway, I didn’t keep my litter name, Thank Lassie. So, anyway, Mummy’s a Serious Distance Runner, and she runs real early, when it’s still dark. So she wants a Brave, Fast Dog to run with her for Cump-nee an Safety. I’m ackshully her third Dalmatian. When her other Dalmatian, Keekoh, got sick, Mummy looked for a puppy. A girl with Not Too Many Spots. I WASN’T her first pick.”
“WHAT?” I blurted.
“It’s true. Too many spots. Mummy wanted my sister, Tara Lapinski, and she wudda got her, too, ’cept the breeder decided to keep her. But there were still other puppies with not so many spots as me. I was s’pose to be a Show Dog cuz I’m Practically Perfect. Then they found this Tear Duct Issue, which meant no show ring for me. So the breeder put me On Sale. Well, FINALLY, Mummy decided ‘What the Woof,’ she’d take me, spots an all. An now she’s glad she did.”
“So what was it was like when you first got here.”
“Keekoh was like a big sis to me. I followed her everywhere. When she went to Dog Heaven, I was droopy for a long time. When I’d only been here for, like, a week, we found this liddle kitten on the bridge, abandoned. Mummy tried to find her a home but nobuddy wanted her. So we kept her. Mummy named her Zohra. At first, I thought she was a puppy like me. She’s black an white, like me, an we got along great right away. Now we know she’s called a cat, an I’m called a dog, but we feel like sisters. We hang out an play an stuff. She’s around here somewhere. At Christmas, we wear festive red collars with bells, an Zohra sings this short, liddle Christmas song, to the same tune as the human one, ‘Deck the Halls.’ It’s huh-LARRY-us. Wanna hear it?”
She stood up.
‘Wreck the tree an blame the Doggie,
Fa la lala la
La la la la!’”
Cat humor. Who knew? We both laughed. “That WAS huh-LARRY-us!” I told her. “I know you do a lotta stuff with your Mom, right?”
“Oh, Woof, yes! Even though Mummy’s a pro-FESS-er at FIT, I’m pretty sure I have more degrees than her: lemme see, there’s basic beginner, intermediate an advanced obedience certifications; AKC Canine Good Citizen; the K-9 Offleash course; three levels of Agility; an I’m an official Therapy Dog AND Service Animal.
“Me an Mummy have done some modelin,’ cover shots an stuff. We also work at Holmes Regional hospiddle once a month, seein’ patients an dokters and nurses in pediatric oncology and orthopedics and women’s, if they’d like a frenly liddle visit. In class I learned how to gently put my front paws up onna bed or put my head against a human for hugs an kisses.”
I had been noticing how happy my Assistant was to get hugs an kisses from Ooo-leeve.
“I also visit the library at FIT when the stoo-dunts are studyin’ and restin’ during mid-terms an have a lotta Stress,” she continued. “We sit on the floor an play, an I give ’em my famous hugs-an-kisses. It helps ’em de-stress, which is Very Important.
“Me an Mummy love stand-up paddle boarding. Swimmin’s way fun, too. But my Absolutely Most Favorite Thing we do together is RUN. We do a ton of 5Ks. EVERYbody knows me an her. She retired from marathons before I arrived, but I’ve run some half-marathon practices with her. My personal best is 16 miles, which Mummy says is ‘not too shabby.’ I love running along when Mummy rides her bike. I’m onna special leash attached to her pants which keeps me at a safe distance. Sometimes my Serious Boyfriend Kai runs with us. We met when Mummy was pooch-sitting him at our place. He’s a handsome Ridgeback-Catahoula mix. A real Hot Dog. I run with my Daddy, too. He’s a Crossfitter. We’re all ATH-leets.”
“Woof, Ooo-leeve, I’m impressed! An inspired! I gotta get Out There more.”
Way too soon, it was time to go.
“Oh, Mr. Bonzo, one more thing,” she said, smiling. “What does a Dalmatian say after dinner?”
“Thanks! That really hit the spot!”
We were both laughing as I left.
“As Mummy would say, Merci et a bientôt!” she called.
Heading home I was thinking, If I had a liddle sister, I’d want her to be like Ooo-leeve.
Till next time,