Rescue dog Albie took warmly to his first snowfall; but can his owner resist the urge to hibernate?
My wife Judy and I generally don’t cotton to winter in Massachusetts, but this year we were actually looking forward to the first significant snowfall. We were eager to see how Albie, the half golden retriever, half yellow Lab we adopted in July, was going to react, seeing as how he came to us from Louisiana where snow is as rare as bipartisanship on Capitol Hill.
He didn’t disappoint. There’s nothing quite as amusing as watching an 80-pound dog bounce straight up in the air, all four feet well off the ground, rotate 180 degrees before landing, repeat the maneuver a half dozen times in rapid succession then plow his snout into a snow pile, roll over on his back, writhe around like Elvis for 60 seconds, pop up and then tear off like Secretariat across the nearby golf course. Yes, that first day or so was magic in a bottle. It was even about 30 degrees – not beach weather, but not “we need to go south now” weather, either. Tolerable, even pleasant, if you had a direct bead on the sun.
Now the reality of winter with a dog as energetic outside the house as he is mellow inside it is settling in. On a recent day, at about 8 a.m., when I wasn't feeling well, it was time to take Albie out for his morning constitutional. A year ago I’d have pulled the covers tight and closed my eyes for, say, another two days. Not an option anymore.