This week I had a fun yap with Krista Runyon, a German Shepherd who just turned 2 this month. I brushed up on my German, cuz you just never know. So I was ready with “Guten morgen!” (Good morning!); “Was ist der Schuss?” (What’s the woof?) Stuff like that.
When me and my assistant stepped in, Krista was right there with her Dad. “Woof!” I thought to myself. She was real pretty, taller than me, long-leggedy, beautiful big, pointy ears, nice fluffy tail. She was sorta prancing around, gave a coupla woofs, looked at her Dad to make sure we were Good Guys. He told her we were, and that I was the reporter who was gonna do her story.
“OH! Cool Dog Biscuits!” she said, and pranced over for the Wag-and-Sniff. “I’m happy to meet you, Mr. Bonzo! I just hadda be sure, ya know. It’s a German Shepherd thing. So, I’m Krista Runyon, and this is my Dad, Billy. My Aunt Jessica lives here, too, and so does Brad. He’s a Morkie.”
“Um, a Morkie? I’m not sure what … ”
“That’s a Maltese mixed with a Yorkie. Brad’s a Big Grump! We call him Bad Brad. We get along fine now (mostly), but we didn’t usta.”
No German. I was relieved. “So tell me about yourself, Miss Krista.”
“I was named after a German Shepherd that Dad and Aunt Jessica had when they were kidlets, she was Krista the First. But they couldn’t keep her, so she applied for a job in law enforcement. Dad an Aunt Jessica were really bummed, and Dad decided, then and there, that he was gonna get another German Shepherd someday, when he was a grown-up. So, two years ago, he saw this puppy ad from Geneva, Florida, and there was a picture of ME. Well, you know how irresistible us puppies are, right?”
“Yup, I do.”
“So there I was in all my adorable-ness, a little fluffball with my front paws up on a ledge, and big ol’ puppy eyes. Of course, that was that. I got to come here soon as I was 8 weeks old. But I hadda ride in a CAR, which I didn’t like much cuz it gave me Tummy Troubles. Still does. I drooled all the way home. So now I don’t hafta ride in it ’cept when I go to the vet, thank Lassie!
“First time I met Dad I KNEW it was gonna be Me and Him. As long as I can be with Dad, I’m happy and seCURE. But back when I was a pupster, I did have this little problem with chewing stuff. Not just any stuff, though. I ’specially enjoyed Corners. Furniture corners and baseboard corners are the BEST. I guess I did get a little carried away on the couch. But just the one section. Oh, and I usta have this Big Huge Loud Yawn when I first woke up. So loud it woke Dad up, too. He said it was ob-NOX-shus.”
“Whadyaa do for fun?” I inquired.
“BALL. I love playin’ catch with Dad. Not Bad Brad, though. He wants nothin’ to do with play. He’s kinda a detective. Does a lot of nosin’ around, checkin’ stuff out. And sometimes he sneakily sneaks my toys, and then I chase him, which is fun. For me. Ooo, and I love the pool. I’m a great swimmer, but only when Dad’s with me, which is only when he’s in the mood to dry me off. See, it takes forEVER cuz my coat is So Thick! Dad hoses me off and uses Head and Shoulders so I’m all nice and soft and pretty.
“You sure are,” I thought to myself.
“Sometimes me and Aunt Jessica play dress-up. Like, for my birthday, I got to wear a little pointy hat. And I have a pink collar, see? And for Christmas, I get to wear a Santa hat! Aunt Jessica takes me to the Dog Park, too. Brad doesn’t get to go with us cuz I go on the Big Dog side, and he hasta go on the Little Dog side, and Aunt Jessica can only be on one side atta time. Brad thinks that’s Soggy Dog Biscuits, cuz in his heart, he’s a Big Dog.”
“Any favorite treats? Or tricks?”
“I do High Fives and Dad gives me Soft ’n Chewies.” She demonstrated. “And I also get big rawhide bones to chew. They’re good for at least a coupla hours’ chewin’. Oooo, and you gotta see THIS. It’s like a Dog IQ Test.”
Krista’s Dad brought out four little red plastic boxes on a base. Each opened in a different way. He put a treat in each box.
“See, it’s called a Poker Box cuz I hafta poke my nose around and figure out how to get the treats. So watch how fast I can do all four. I’m gonna try to beat my record!”
She sat like a statue, staring at the box, till her Dad, the Official Timer, said, “OK! GO!”
With her paws and nose, she poked at the boxes, really fast, pulling, lifting, sliding and pushing, gulping the treat after each. “45 seconds! My Personal Best!” she announced, smiling and prancing around.
“Woof!” I said with admiration. “That was aMAZing!”
“I KNOW! Right?” she agreed.
“It’s been a real pleasure yapping with you, Miss Krista,” I told her, realizing, reluctantly, that it was time to go.
“I hope you come back to visit me, Mr. Bonzo,” she said.
Heading home, I was thinking, “I sure hope so, too!” Till next time,