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Movin' on with Nellie: It’s the life with Schroeder and Lena!

Posted: Friday, Mar 1st, 2013

My dogs raid my snack tray with carrots when I turn my back, adjust the bird cage or walk out of the room.

Both of my cocker spaniels are rescues, the latest and youngest one came from the Rocky Mountain Cocker Rescue in Denver (http://rockymountaincockerrescue.org).

The last few days, their personalities have highlighted my days and travels.

When I return from the other room, Schroeder has a carrot in his mouth and that certain “Me bad” long-eared look. I say, “Did you get into my carrots?”

Then other one, a beautiful shiny chocolate, looks up at me, with her baby browns; “I want a carrot, too, mom,” she seems to telepathically ask. So I relinquish and slip her the last baby carrot in the plate.

Even when I drove to the post office this morning, Schroeder sat at attention as he does when he sits for a treat. I still had his snack pack in the car and put it up on the dash so he couldn’t reach it. When I turned back around to him as I opened the Post Office door, sure enough, he had stretched up and reached the pack. He was nipping at it and slowly dislodging it. Quickly, I stepped back; pointed at him to “sit” and gave him the “stay" command. I checked one more time before entering that mail room and noticed he sat pretty still.

His reward was one of those snacks. He took it without any to-do and swallowed. And internally, I smiled and enjoyed the moment.

I took them to be groomed yesterday; and had an afternoon at Edna’s in the country. As I turned on the gravel road toward her small ranch, my dogs climbed into the front seat. They were watching the road and the horses, cows and sheep along the road. It wasn’t long before Schroeder jumped into my lap, I’m the driver supposedly. He and Lena began a chorus of whines and shaking in anticipation.

Schroeder paws my arm, and seems to be “ant-sy pants” before I open the door and let them out. They are in pursuit of each other, rushing the ranch dogs and eyeing the sheep and goats returning from their field excursion.

At one point, my eyes looked for them as they dashed around the house and leaped up on the picnic table where I stood. Without a pause, Schroeder pressed his paws on my shoulders and revealed his absolute glee at being free to run. His hug was a thank you, I sensed.

Lena was here and there, under one fence and another opening. Where Schroeder figured the weakness in the fence, Lena tried the gate; I had to open the door for her because the weight was too much for her little nuzzle.

The round up and drive to the groomer’s was another excitement. Where Schroeder was eager to get in the house to see what cat dish he could lick, Lena was ready to turn and leave the other way. Some coaxing had to be done.

The return home was a bit more reserved’ with the back seat full of fresh fruit, organic bread, lettuce and jalapenos, the two darlings napped in the passenger seat all the way back home.

Still, when those carrots are brought out, I have to be careful not to leave the plate because these two rascals love the crunchy fresh baby edibles.

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