Just before Christmas, I got an email from Kate Crutchfield, an English Golden Retriever who just turned 4. She invited me over to yap with her and her twin brother, Ben. She even sent me a coupla pictures. “We’re cuter in person, except when we roll in the dirt,” she noted.
Kate and Ben live right on John’s Island Sound, and, Woof, do they have a nice set-up. They were both wagging and wiggling when their Mom opened the door, and they scooted right up for the Wags-and-Sniffs. They were VERY cute in person, both wearin’ green bandannas. They had thick, wavy, cream-colored coats. Maybe that’s why they’re called English Goldens, cuz they’re the color of tea with lotsa cream, almost white, like the English humans make it. Anyway, that’s my theory. They looked exactly alike to me.
“Thanks for coming, Mr. Bonzo! I’m Kate, and this is our Mom, Barbara.”
“And I’m Ben! Our Daddee’s Ed.”
I musta looked puzzled, cuz Kate said, “You can tell us apart cuz I have a nice pinkish nose and Ben’s got a black nose. Everybody gets us confused.”
Their Mom headed into the kitchen and they took off after her. “Come’on!” said Ben. “It’s Dinnertime! Want some?”
“Oh, no thanks. I’m good,” I replied.
Ben and Kate raced into the dining room. There were two elevated food and water stations, and two big, comfy sheepskin beds, one on each side of the room (which looked out on the Sound.) Their Mom filled the dishes, and the sound of munching filled the air.
After supper, I asked how they met their Forever Family.
“After Mom and Daddee’s other dogs went to Dog Heaven, Mom NEVER wanted another dog, EVER,” said Ben.
“But Daddee really, REALLY did,” said Kate. “So he got his hunting buddies to help him look for The Perfect Dog. Hadda be a Boy. They found an English Golden breeder in Port St. Lucie, and Ben was the last boy in the litter, so he got picked. Me and Ben had always been together so, even though I wuz happy for him, I wuz VERY SAD for me. What wuz I gonna DO?”
“I was happy AND sad, too,” Ben said. “Before I could go to my Forever Family (we were still on Mommy Milk), my new Mom came to meet me. And there we were, me and Kate, two little white fluff balls, stickin’ together like glue. So Mom went from zero dogs to two dogs just like that!”
“Thank Lassie!” Kate said. “Anyway, the breeder said we should be crated at night, so Mom and Daddee put us to bed in our crates, in the kitchen. They were comf-tubble and all, but Mom couldn’t sleep, thinkin’ of us in crates. So she piled her blanket and pillows on the kitchen floor and slept right next to us all night.”
“That was the first and last time we were in those crates,” said Ben. “Now we have our own Private Quarters. Wanna see?”
They bounded out to the patio, zipped past the infinity pool and disappeared through French doors. I grabbed my notebook and followed. Dog! They were reclining on a great big people bed. The room matched the colors of Ben and Kate’s coats. There were nice, big bay windows. Very spiffy, I thought.
“Our bed’s so big, we ushully let Mom and Daddee share it with us,” said Kate.
“Very thoughtful,” I commented. “Your Private Quarters are Totally PAWsome! So, waddya do for fun?”
“We PLAY!” They bounced back to the patio and leaped into the pool. “We have a resident Bird we usta chase. Now it stays on a post in the water and we politely don’t bother it. Much. We also enjoy a nice after-dinner dip,” said Ben. “And we love going to the dog park cuz its Off-Leash. We DON’T Like LEASH WALKING! Specially ME. We get so excited, we could pull Mom right over. We had a trainer once, but it just isn’t the way we roll, ya know? We’re free spirits.”
“Right,” Kate agreed. “We don’t need no silly ol’ trainer.”
They jumped out of the pool, and their Mom hurried over with an armful of towels for them, me, my assistant and my photographer, not a minute too soon for the obligatory Shake-Offs.
“Didja have a nice Christmas?” I inquired.
“Totes!” said Kate. “Mom fixed us a big tenderloin. Medium rare. Sometimes she bakes us a sweet potato, which we share with her. We normally get kibbles, followed by a Greenie to clean our teeth. Good oral hygiene is SO important, ya know.”
“Indeed it is,” I agreed. “Do you enjoy travlin’?”
“Yep! We go to our place up in North Carolina. We have a Dog-Mobile.”
“A Dog-Mobile. Mom keeps the back seats down, and we have big fluffy beds. Wanna see?”
They headed for the front drive. The Dog-Mobile was a shiny, big SUV.
“Seriously Cool Dog Biscuits!!” I exclaimed.
Their Mom opened the back hatch. Two “orthopedic foam” mattresses with sheepskin tops filled the whole floor. She said “Load” and they jumped in. Ben rooted around and came up with a stuffed fox toy in his mouth.
“Thif if ma fabowat wed we trabel.”
“Him and his silly toys. I don’t DO toys!” Kate sniffed. “Anyway, if I even pick one up, he grabs it. I prefer to hang out with Mom at her special vanity. Ben never comes in, but he guards the door so we’ll have privacy while we’re getting all pretty. Girl stuff, ya know.”
“I’ve heard,” I said.
Heading home, I was thinking about Ben and Kate sittin’ in the pool, watching the sunset. And thinking maybe Mr. Webster should change the definition of “a dog’s life.”
Till next time,