Howdy folks! How’re all y’all doin’? M’Lady has been after me for weeks and weeks to get this post written. I’ve been slow to do it, though, ’cause it gives me a pain.
Ya see, afore Brodi came along, I had a yardmate named Gump. To say that I miss Gump would be a falsehood. He was a hard dog to love, ‘specially for YoursTruly. But he was here afore I came to live with TheFam, and he was definitely the boss dog!
Ole’ Gump was a bloodhound, which means that he was a single minded trackin’ dog, and lacking in intelligence. He was also a bully, snarlin’, pushin’ me around. It was bad. But, TheFam wasn’a gonna dump him on the street, drop him in the desert, take him to the pound! No sir! We all put up with him to the very end!
Gump was a beautiful dog, a real specimine! M’Lady said that he had the most beautiful face ever! (really M’Lady, break my heart while you’re at it!) But he was so ill behaved that he made her boil and rage and cuss!
Fer example. The #1 rule at our house is this: when a dog comes into the house, he goes STRAIGHT to his cushy bed in the kitchen. M’Lady taught me that command ONCE and never had to tell me again, that’s how smart I am! But Gump lived here for 8 years, and every single day he came inside 4 or 5 times. By my calculations, that’s about 10,000 times! And every single time he wandered ’round the kitchen, lookin’ around like he’d never been there before! Like he was sayin’ “Wow! Nice pad! Wonder who lives here? ” And sniffin’ his way through the whole house! And M’Lady would say, “Gump bed. Gump bed! Gump bed! GUMP BED!!!” And then, with flames comin’ outa her eyeballs and smoke comin’ outa her hair, she’d drag all 97 pounds of him back to his bed!
He drove M’Lady to insanity!
The other thing he did was to not come when he was called. That dog went to TWO rounds of obedience training, and only at the very end of the second round did he FINALLY get the sit and come commands! Good grief!
He was also a real bully to me. His food bowl was in the kitchen, mine is in the laundryroom. He would actually leave his full bowl of food and race over, snarlin’ at me to back away, then he’d steal my food! Or if M’Lady gave each of us a bone, he’d race over, steal my bone, and take both fer hissef! Mean!
But boy could he track! That dog had a nose like nothin’ you’ve seen before! He’d follow a scent and take off, trottin’ a fast trot fer miles ‘n’ miles!
And, oh his bay! That dog didn’a bark, he bayed and howled! Fer example, there’s a train ’bout 1-1/2 miles from our farm. It goes by several times a day, and you can hear it whistle in the distance. Every time, Ole’ Gump would bay ‘n’ bay ‘n’ bay, a beautiful sing-song that TheFam loved to hear. They’d stop whatever they were doin’, and listen to Ole’ Gump sing fer ’em.
Right after ClayMan brought him home to live with TheFam, Gump got clobbered by a big truck. Broke his femur and also his hip in 4 places. TheFam had him fixed up, though they always wondered why. Anyhows, the doc said someday that hip would cause him trouble, and sure enough, after many years, when he was about 10 years old, it happened. One mornin’, he woke up and his hind legs wouldna work. He kinda sat and tried to move, but would sorta spin in circles. ‘Twas awful to see.
M’Lady knew just what it was. The calcification of the broken hip had grown into his spinal cord, and finally on that day, had grown just far enough as to affect him, causin’ his legs to not work and turrible pain.
She got a helper to load him into the back of her car and hauled him into the vet. They put him on a big stretcher and took him into a quiet room, with a fish tank, dim lights and soft music. Dr. Caldwell (she’s so nice and so purty, looks like a model! She can work on YoursTruly any time!!!) gave him some pain killers while she and M’Lady decided what had to be done. And then, Dr. Caldwell gave him some medicine to put him to sleep. Ole’ Gump just gently, quietly laid his head down, and went forever to sleep in M’Lady’s arms.
The vet and her helper were cryin’. M’Lady was cryin’ ‘n’ cryin’. She cried all the way home. She cried all evenin’. TheBoss came home from work early, helped her bring Gump’s body outa the car and into the backyard. He was cryin’. Everyone was cryin’. Me, I wasna cryin’ attall, but I felt purty bad. TheBoss dug a big hole and buried him under the bush where Gump liked to bury his bones. In fact, TheBoss found a few of Gump’s bones while he was diggin’ the hole.
M”Lady was still bawlin’ her head off, till FarmGirl sent her a text: “Gump bed. Gump bed! Gump bed! GUMP BED!!!” Then M’Lady laughed a teary laugh, and didna cry nomore.
And after that, there was peace in the house. Everyone was sad, but also, peaceful. Gump had been such a hard dog to live with. ‘Specially for YoursTruly. Now I had M’Lady all to mesef, she was never irritated, only happy and sweet! She still misses Ole’ Gump whenever the train whistle blows, though.
Well gotta run! My pal, Brodi’s headed out the door and wants to play!
Keep your tail waggin’!