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Poodle Commands

Mr.Puppyjackpot and I are heading home, after a weekend trip to the cities for our first ever Wild Hockey game. It is Monday morning and we are currently traversing the “bog road”, which reminds me of my first trip down this road. Almost 16 years ago I moved to Warroad with my heart poodle, Anna. This road gave me a serious pause, in the “this is a good move” mantra that was running through my head, and occasionally being said aloud to Anna, who was happily snoozing in the backseat next to my prized possession, my personal computer. Yep, it was on this road that it dawned on me that I had never asked if there was internet connectivity up here, and based on the road, the trees and the overall lack of civilization I was a bit concerned that my PC might become a doorstop!

My fears were unfounded, Warroad had dial-up, and while slow, it allowed me to connect with my poodle peeps on the informative, fun and somewhat volatile “Poodle Support Group”. Who knew that all these years later I would be sitting next to my husband writing my blog on my iPad, happy to be headed home. 16 years ago I knew nothing about husbands, IPads, or blogs! I wrote stories, but on my PC in Word Perfect!

Today on our way north, I pointed out the rest area where Anna and I stopped on that initial trip, and it got me thinking about those early years with Anna. She was not quite three when I moved to Warroad, the same age Vivian is now. She loved a car ride and like Vivian would jump in the back seat and snooze until we got our destination. It did not matter if the trip was 18 minutes or 18 hours, she would lay down in the back seat for a little nap. However, just as I remember doing as a child, at every town, she would pop up as though to ask “are we there yet?” On longer trips she would occasionally sit up, woof once, and lay her head on my shoulder which was her signal for “get off at the next rest area please”!

Anna was not quite two when she discovered the horn. I was living in Shaker Heights Ohio, and would often take her with as I ran errands. A couple of places I frequently stopped at were the dry cleaners and a favorite Chinese food restaurant that were in the same strip mall. One day while waiting for my clothes, I heard a horn honk. Turning around I saw Anna in the driver’s seat of my car, so I smiled and waved at her through the plate-glass window of the storefront. As I turned back to pay, I heard another short bleat of a horn but paid it no mind. One more somewhat longer blast and the owner of the cleaners wondered aloud, ” who is honking their horn?”, with a shrug of my shoulder’s I indicated I had no idea, went out to the car and praised my sweet poodle on her good behavior in the car!

A couple of days later I went to pick up my Chinese food order. I am patiently waiting for my food when I hear a short beep, followed a short bit later by a slightly longer beep, then beep, beep, beep in rapid succession. In walks the kid who delivered for the restaurant asking, “who owns the poodle in the red Oldsmobile?” I indicated it was me and asked if something was wrong, to which he replied, “I think she wants you to hurry up, she is sitting out there honking the horn!”

So my city poodle, who knew to stop and sit at every curb, knew which way was right and which was left, learned another new command that week. That age-old obedience command “No Honking!”

Peggy and Anna 1995

Peggy and Anna 1995

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