More disturbing, however, is the tendency of these folks to play what I call musical canine chairs. Because I do a lot of running, I'm well-acquainted with the furry beasties that reside behind my neighborhood's fences. And those who regularly jump them, like Axl, a good-natured hulk of a Malamute who, if he sees me, jumps his bounds in a single leap and hitches along for the duration, his tongue lolling out in sheer joy because, well, that dog was born to run. He may lumber on ahead a few paces, but he will never leave me entirely. He is a dog impossible to shake, so when I'm done, I call the number on his tag and tell his owner that Axl is out front of my gate, come get him. And his owner does, apologizing profusely, but I don't mind. I have half a mind to ask if I can have Axl, I love him that much.
But a good percentage of my neighborhood dogs are here today, gone tomorrow, replaced with something else. It's so odd. Surely, not everyone is involved in fostering? Nor can they be so incapable of training their animals that they just keep trying different ones on for size until something clicks? I don't get it. I can count on one hand the number of households whose doggie denizens have remained the same for years. The rest are a revolving door of breeds. Not added, mind you, but substituted.
Take these fellers. For several years, the only dog who resided behind this fence was a spunky yellow Lab. Then came a Border Collie, who I last saw just last week. Now THESE dudes, two Akita-looking things (Troll?) with bad attitudes. Lab and Border Collie nowhere to be seen.
If I give you a snack, will you promise not to take my hand off?