My Old Dog is Learning New Tricks

with duck
Pettigrew cuddles with the toy duck he received for his birthday.

Like proud parents everywhere, I can’t resist sharing with you what Pettigrew did this week.

He played the duck.

No, that is not a typo.

For his August birthday, among his other presents, Pettigrew received a toy duck with two squeakers inside. Based on past experience, I expected to find piles of shredded duck bits around the house within a week. I also expected to see the squeakers exhumed from the body and pierced so that they would no longer make noise.

Instead, Pettigrew befriended the duck. He cuddles the duck.

And, I discovered, he plays the duck…he squeezes the duck at the appropriate places to emit the squeaky sound. He does this to music.

My older son plays the piano. Pettigrew sings along.

My younger son plays the clarinet. Pettigrew sings to that too.

We assumed that Pettigrew was a vocalist. An impressive enough feat.

Over the past year, my older son has taught himself to play guitar. He typically plays in his room. The other day he brought the guitar downstairs and played while I was making dinner.

Partway through the song, we began to hear squeaking. Then in rushed Pettigrew, duck in mouth, depressing the squeaky discs in the duck’s body in accompaniment to the guitar.

Perhaps it is because my son sings while he plays guitar and Pettigrew did not feel up to harmonizing.

I like to think that in his retirement, Pettigrew has decided to take up a new instrument. Keeps him young.

Unfortunately, I was too stunned to capture it on video. However, if you’d like to see one of his musical compatriots, please follow this link for a gifted canine musician.Beagle who sings and plays piano

4 thoughts on “My Old Dog is Learning New Tricks

  1. Ruth, I love the line, “Unfortunately I was too stunned…..” This is a wonderful post. I love your take on the view of Pettigrew, family. I found the book I told you about. It’s very different, but it’s called, My Dog Tulip. It’s about his relationship with his dog, is well known, considered a classic–it’s, in places, a bit rawly clinical, but worth the read. “My Dog Pettigrew.”

    Liked by 1 person

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