Woof, does Nugget Sweeny know how to tell a TAIL! When the front door opened there stood (wiggled) this hansome Cockapoo, long, flowy ears, tight curls nose-to-caboose (extra-bobbed tail, his in-thuzzy-astic wag was more of a booty shake). An he was Super CORE-jull! (Plus, he’s 12 anna haff, anna spaniel like me.) We hit it off right away.
“Come IN! Come IN! GREAT to meet you in the Fur! BONZ, right? I’m Nugget SWEE-ny.
Call me Nuggie! This is my Daddy, Doug. My Mommy Suzanne’ll be here inna bit. Come IN! Havva SEAT! LOVE your column!”
“Thanks, Nuggie! From your Woofmail I know you have lotsa great tails so I brought extra pens an I’m ready to write! First off, how’d you get that Cool Kibbles name?”
“An I’m ready to yap! Mommy-an-Daddy picked my name cuz when they got me, a 9-week-old pupper, I was ‘cute, small an valuable, like a gold nugget, a tiny liddle morsel,’ Daddy says. Now I’m a 30-pound nugget! Mommy-an-Daddy’s 8 gran-kidlets (my neeces an neffews) call me Nuggie Noodle cuz they say my soft, curly fur is like spaghetti noodles.
“Mommy-an-Daddy were Cuh-NEDDY-cut/Florida Snowbirds an, when their buh-loved Golden ReTREEver Brandy went to Dog Heaven, an they were finally ready for another pooch, they found me on line through the American Cock-a-Poo Association. I was inna place called TEX-us, an they quickly snagged me. I was placed inna travel cage, then onna plane, then flown to Mouse Town where Mommy-an-Daddy picked me up. They thought I’d be a Mess from the flight but I wasn’t. I didn’t even Do My Dootie in the Cage! I was like, ‘Hey! Hi! Here I am. Can I have a TOY please?’ (I always hafta to have a Support Toy to carry around. Still do. Wherever I go. It’s, like, my THING!”
Nuggie pointed to a basket in the corner filled with a rainbow pile of stuffies.
“I still love flyin’ in planes. I always usta get the window seat. Only problem is, you can’t stick your head out the window an let your ears an whiffles blow wild an free, like inna car.
Anyway, the airplane comp-nee doesn’t come here anymore which is major Soggy Biscuits. Lotsa my pooch pals agree.”
“Yeah, I’ve heard that,” I commiserated. “So, what was it like in your new furever home?”
“I adjusted pretty quick. When Mommy-an-Daddy’d leave me home when they went Elsewhere, I’d sit onna chair by the front window an watch for them to return. Except the first time: When they came back from Elsewhere, they found me in the laundry room stranded on top of the very tall washing mush-een. I was a teeny pupper an even I don’t know how I got up there. But I couldn’t get down. It scared the fluff outta me AN them.”
“What’s life’s like these days?” I flipped another page, wishin’ I had more space.
“Well, I’m not quite as Go-go-go as in my pupper days,” Nugget acknowledged.
“Word!” I smiled, picturing my comfy chair.
“But,” he continued, “I can still catch a toy from a pretty good distance. Of course I can Sit, Stay, Pretty Sit, Shake, Lay Down, all that stuff humans seem to like. (No clue why.) An livin’ right here on the river …”
(I’d noticed his Cool Kibbles back yard was fenced and he could go all the way to the river but not into the water.)
“I can go outside by myself, even sometimes at night: When it’s dark an quiet an miss-TEARY-us, with different sounds, I sorta feel like I’m one with my fellow creatures, you know?”
“I asckshully do, Nuggie,” I replied. “I ackshully do.”
“In the daytime,” he continued, “there’re squirrels, RAH-butts and those goofy lizards all over the place. But, honestly Bonz, I don’t give a flyin’ woof about them. I’m more interested in BIRDS. (I mean, I’m a BIRD dog after all!) I LOVE watchin’ the pelicans. An, Guess What!? The other day I was with dad atta church where they’re buildin’ a cool big STRUCK-chur, when this strange fluffy creechur walked right inside. It was the weirdest pooch I ever saw, big as me. I approached for the traditional Wag-an-Sniff. Then I realized I didn’t know which was the Wag end, an which was the Sniff end. I mean, both ends were covered with FEATHERS. Then, out of the feathers, this weird face appeared, and addressed me very loudly in a strange language. I nodded politely and retreated. I heard later it was a Turkey. That’s a bird. Not a dog at all. Who knew?
“Another time, we came home from an event to find this big white and pink creature bobbin’ around in our pool. Looked sorta like a horse. Pink an blue mane an tail. Big eyes.
Horn sticking out of its head. Kinda pretty. I’m sure it was a grrrl. I puhlitely introduced myself but she didn’t say anything. Just kept floatin’ around. Shy, I guess. After a couple days she was gone. Never did speak to me. Mommy-an-Daddy say she was a unicorn.
“Woof! Any pooch pals?”
“In summer, my cousins, Bear, a 95-pound sheep-a-doodle, and Shorty, a 6-pound mini-dappled-dashchund, visit us. We chase each other around the house. Mommy-an-Daddy say ‘STOP!’ but we’re pretty sure they’re just kiddin.’ One time when we were home alone, we got into the pantry. Bear swept the dog food off the high shelf (in retrospect, not high enough). It was a spectacular mess! Henceforth, the pantry door was wired shut. My neighborhood pals are Leo, Maggie, Casey an Panda. My best human pals are my eight neeces an neffews.
“My favrite humans are Mommy-an-Daddy. Woof, do they love me. We snuggle at night an watch TV and I get Belly Rubs. Totally The Best Time of Day, paws down! I mean, life just doesn’t get any better!”
Heading home, I was thinking about Nuggie, my fellow spaniel, living his best life, bringing joy to his humans and, lucky for me, sharing his considerable gift of gab, with one an all.
Till next time,