It’s Sunday morning, and our little doggie caravan is heading east down I-20, going to the National Field Trials in Pierce City, Missouri. Andy and Dawn in the Ford F250 Powerstroke dually, pulling a 4Star 4-horse slant trailer – and us, in our Yukon XL, pulling Andy’s Gator. The seven dogs are very nicely ensconced in the horse trailer, complete with major air shocks, cushioned floor, and air conditioning. (Dawn is a world-class barrel racer, and this is her trailer.) Way better than your average dog trailer!
We brought Zack’s collapsible crate so he can come into the hotel room with us at night, so don’t worry – he won’t be in captivity the entire time – just during the trials, outside of his run times. Exercise fields will be provided, so that’s good. Our boy will definitely need some exercise by the time we get to Missouri. Lots of people stake out their dogs, but our group will stay cool in the trailer most of the day once we arrive. Andy is a stickler on limiting fraternization.
I just realized how funny that probably sounds. The isolation is about the prevention of potential transfer of disease.
(“Sure, Mom,” says Zack (in a gravelly voice somewhat reminiscent of MLH’s)…”Tell them what the deal really is…y’all just don’t want me talking to other hunting dogs. Mom, are you prejudiced, or what? Like we’re going to share scenting tricks - trades of the trials? Talk about living conditions? Compare our pillow down percentages? How many pig ears we get per day? (Man, I am a funny dog!)
Cat nab it, Mom…you’re not the only social animal on this trip! I WANT to meet dogs from all over the nation! I do! I do! Mom, you know I am a meet and greet MACHINE! I learned how at Pet Smart, remember, during the socialization portion? And I got my diploma…didn’t I?
Mom, sit. (Dang. I wish I had hands like hers. I have trouble making that “Sit” hand signal.) Sit. Listen to me. I just want to meet the other dogs and visit. Really. We’re not going to organize the fraternal organization of the field trial dogs, I promise. Please, Mom? Please?
Awwwwww, Mom…that is just not right! You and Dad talk to people and meet new people all the time, Mom. And I’m always nice when I’m out with you, I’ve been a very good boy -and we've not even discussed what a handsome devil I am!
Mom, it’s just not right! Did I tell you to get up yet? Mom! Mom! Sit! Sit! Listen to me, Mom.
Dad! Dad! Mom’s being mean again, and she’s not even minding my commands! Can you give me that “Hunting Mom” book again, Dad, and open it up to the Making Obedience Fun chapter? I think I might need to refresh a bit. Something’s just not right here.”)
Yup. The secret is out.
Not Zack’s verbosity...I warned you about that back here, remember?
The secret is out. Zack is a social butterfly - trapped in an alpha male body.