I'm taking care of a friend's pets yet again. It hasn't been all roses like I had anticipated: having a happy-go-lucky yellow lab obediently by my side for all adventures, having the cats curled up on the couch next to me for an evening of reading or boob tube. There must be something in the water out there in Tiburon because one or both of the cats has diarrhea and, since Wednesday, so does the dog.
Yesterday I took the dog on a hike, which he loves because he gets to be off leash, smell around and frolick behind me and then sprint up ahead to lead the way again. About 15 minutes into the trail I hesitated to continue: not only was there a new trail I could go down, but I also smelled the faint hint of smoke. Is there a fire smuldering somewhere down the path? If so, which path? What if I take this path straight back but the fire is starting on the path to the left, and by the time I come back the exit will be cut off by flames... I'll perish like a trapped rabbit! But, what if the fire is on the trail straight ahead? Can I run fast enough to outpace a forest fire? And then I sniffed the air again, and couldn't smell fire anymore, so continued on my way.
After feeling comfortable walking with little probability of encountering flames, I noticed that everytime Jake ran in front of me he seemed to have really bad gas. Geez, dog, what the hell have you been eating? We trudged along him gassing away and me exhaling the fumes away from me, and I thought I heard a mountain bike coming. The dog is pretty good about sticking to one side of the trail or another... until a person approaches either running or biking, so upon thinking a biker was coming I ordered Jake to stop so I could catch up and hold him out of the way. As he stopped and turned I freaked out.
Jake was bleeding from his neck! Oh no! What did he catch himself on? Poor puppy! As I ran closer I began to see... see exactly why the dog was emitting such foul odors - it wasn't blood smeared from his jawbone down his chest, it was shit. He must have slipped in his own poop earlier on the trail. Poopy faced Jake and I finished our walk, I tried to clean him up as much as possible before putting him in my car (unroll all windows, open sunroof!), taking him home and then having to give him a bath (which he despised). By the time I finished that, discovered ants covering the cats' food bowl and dealing with that, it was 9:00pm.
Ah... another day in paradise!