It’s been a rainy couple of weeks in Michigan. Nothing to really complain about when other parts of the country suffer from droughts, but it has been quite warm and muggy when it isn’t actually raining. I pity the poor school kids off at summer camp sessions sweltering in their little cabins or out on the playing fields trying to have fun when they are sweaty, sticky, and smelly. There is always the relief of jumping into a lake. That’s how I remember it, anyway.
The result of this at Bluestem Pond is a lush growing season. The grasses and flowers are up to chest high and the cattails are over my head. As I sit here gazing out the window, the evening breeze is causing the flowers to rock gently on their long stems.
Poor Fionny has developed a thunder anxiety and comes to lean his head on my leg when the rumbling begins. If it is nighttime, he breaks our family rule and dives onto the bed between us and pops his head up at every crack and boom. We have taken pity on him and have given up ordering him back down onto the floor under these circumstances. I think it will be this tiny leverage that leads to the eventual breakdown of the bedtime rules, but what can you do when you love your dog?
Fionn has been a little down in the dumps lately. It may be the weather, it may be because Joe was out of town for a couple of days, or it may be because he has a couple irritating maladies. He’s always been very sensitive about his feet and forelegs and every now and then begins compulsively licking one foot or another until it gets so irritated and sore that he must limp around dejectedly until the foot is able to overcome his attention and heal on its own. There is little we can do. I’ve tried treating it with ointment but he licks it off. Bandages are ripped off in quick order. Spraying “bitter apple” on it does nothing to deter him, and heaven forbid that we torture him with a cone on his neck to block his ability to reach his foot. As it is, we continually yell, “Leave it!” until he obeys and sadly looks at us out of the corner of his eye, sighs, and lays his head down over his sore foot.
During this challenging period, I am encouraged when Fionn and I do some of his favorite things – tromping through the fields together or fishing on the pond – and he regains his joyous demeanor for a while. He’s still in there, just waiting to heal up so the world can get back into order.