Life with Dogs: Part 10-Tula

Tula came to me as a scared, skinny runaway from Chico, CA, age unknown.

She’d recently given birth, had a dry, raggedy coat and kept her tail permanently tucked between her legs.

She refused to jump into a car, but broke three (empty) bowls by jumping onto the kitchen counter in search of food to filch.

She’d had a hard life to that point.

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I took her to Holly Park on her first day in Bernal Heights so she could get  a view of her new neighborhood.

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Tula never met another dog she didn’t like, or at least tolerate. I saw her growl only a few times, and she had to be taught how to bark again.

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Though she always kept an eye on me, She liked and tolerated children of all ages too.

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Tula got around.

As my black and white shadow, she traveled from California to points all over the East Coast.

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On the Pacific Coast at The Sea Ranch,

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At the Brooklyn Bridge with Illustrator Paul O Zelinsky.

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And on top of Vermont’s Mt Abraham with Sabin Russell.

TulainCreek_web Tula’s favorite spot was belly deep in some body of water.

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but she was happy in all weather as long as I was there too.

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After any encounter with moisture, she would joyfully roll in grass or sand or the dusty driveway.

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Tula was the sweetest dog I’ve ever had and she will be profoundly missed.

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Life with Dogs: Part 9 Lucy

Children and puppies both start out small.

RowanBaby:webChildren grow fairly slowly, year by year, and only reach their full size in a couple of decades.

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Puppies start out small too, but grow SO much faster.

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Here is Rowan at almost 7 years and Lucy at age 12 weeks. 

Puppies are pretty much full grown in a year. This transformation provided the inspiration for my book When Lucy Goes Out Walking.

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Starting in January, the pup in the book grows month by month.

LucyJanuary

By March she is leggy and adolescent looking.

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By July, she’s a mostly grown companion on a grassy hill.

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and by rainy November she can carry groceries and trot along through puddles.

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The weather turns cold again and this time Lucy leaves “big dog prints” in first December snows.

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A year passes and here is Rowan at almost 8 years and Lucy at 12 months. What a difference a year made for one small pup!

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Pumpkins

Pumpkin was an affectionate nickname in my family, so I chose it as the name for my 1st Border Collie.

I love the word Pumpkin-how it fills my mouth and suggests the shape of the fruit.

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Yes, a pumpkin is a fruit- actually a berry. It is a member of the Cucurbitaceae family, along with melons and cucumbers. The rule of thumb to tell fruit from vegetables is that: if it has seeds, it is a fruit, no seeds, it’s a vegetable.

As with every experience, Pumpkin stands in for me and is able to do things I can never do.HalloweenMaskweb 

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Lately, I have found a new, black, love object named Baby Bear. He is enjoying every bit of autumn in Vermont, especially the pumpkins!

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