Let the Good Times Roll

on the trailYesterday my husband and I went hiking. Much to our surprise, Pettigrew perked up when he saw the water bottles on the counter. Started following my husband around the house. And generally put himself in our path, making it clear that he considered himself invited too.

Ordinarily, we would have included him, however, it didn’t occur to us as he has been lethargic, whether from his slowly resolving GI upset, the heat, or a combination of both.

Actually, lethargic may be an understatement. He has perfected sprawling on the floor in an ungainly tangle of legs, paws, tail, and body. When he hears us approach, he doesn’t lift his head or wave his tail. Just lies still. We have gotten in the habit of pausing before walking on, watching to confirm that his chest is rising and falling. One of my sons confided that failing to see movement one day, he laid his hand gently of Pettigrew’s side until he felt signs of life.

So, we had not thought he would be up for a hike.

Given his apparent eagerness, we grabbed a bowl, some plastic bags, and his leash. Of course he was welcome to come!

Pettigrew had a great time. He enjoyed the new sniffs. Met several other dogs. And seemed like his old self.

I’m torn as to how to think about this.

On the plus side, Pettigrew is returning to himself—eating better, his coat glossier, his energy up, his eyes bright. It’s wonderful!

However, there’s a piece of me that can’t help wondering if I’ve been played. The day before the hike he turned back early on our walk, communicating in no uncertain terms that he couldn’t possibly go further. It was time to head home! Yet the very next day, he was choosing a hike in addition to his morning walk. Could he possibly have recovered so quickly? Or, has he just grown accustomed to extra attention; meals of pumpkin, rice, chicken, and dog food all gently mixed and warmed in the microwave; and walks on his terms?


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