|The lake from their back deck|
|Milo and Millie feeling hopeful|
While the people chatted, the dogs raced ahead scouting for rabbits. I lagged far behind taking photographs.
I was kneeling to get a low angle on the scene ahead, when suddenly Scooter came bounding back and threw himself into my arms.
The next morning, as I was lounging in a chair outside the kitchen, Scooter came bounding up and leaped into my lap.
|He was often on my lap|
|Scooter after a dip|
|A game he never tired of|
I was beginning not to care that he still smelled faintly of fox poop.
It is almost impossible not to fall in love with an animal who tells you at every opportunity that you are the most wonderful person he's ever met.
And Scooter did.
He waited patiently for Rob & me to return from our day trips, even refusing to leave with the other dogs when Clare took them out for walks. He wriggled from head to toe the minute we entered the room.
Usually we'd get the tennis racket out and one of us would hit balls for him. If we sat down instead, he'd get a ball and push it in between our bottoms & the chair back.
Scooter loves balls just as much as Caitlin does, but unlike Caitlin, he's not pushy about it. When I stopped hitting his ball, he'd trot happily back to the house beside me and cuddle instead. No shrill bark or laser-like stare to intimidate me into doing his bidding. No imperious paw slapped down onto my book or computer if I wasn't paying attention to him.
Scooter is a comfortable dog, the sort who would sit by the fire with you while you read & sipped brandy, and never ask for anything more than to be close beside you..
Unlike Caitlin (also known as "psycho-dog" at the dog park), who is frenetic demanding, always busy, and wants your full attention NOW!
Clare rescued Scooter about 4 years ago from a family who basically never paid him any attention. Now he gets several walks a day. He can roam unfettered across 140 acres of farmland that has rabbits to chase, a lake to swim in, and fox poop if he feels like rolling.
But Clare says he's not really happy. He doesn't want to be one of a pack. He wants to be an only dog. Apparently he wants to be OUR dog. And she'd let us have him if we asked.
|I couldn't help but love him|
But we can't give him what he needs, although he doesn't know that.
We didn't take him back with us.
It feels like a betrayal.