Old Boy Scout

Scout, once my tall-grass bounder, my sock-stealing rascal, has developed canine dementia, and circles and circles and circles for no reason. That, in itself, is disturbing—the silence interrupted by the sound of his nails like fat, slow rain on the wooden floor for long stretches of time. But Scout circles, too, before two events which happen periodically throughout the day: a) his naps and b) the occasions of his pooping. So throughout the day, as Scout circles, there’s the added uncertainty about whether or not he’s going to stop, sleep, or take a shit. We can do this sad, or we can do this funny.

Sad would be my boy leaving me without warning—one loss conjuring the others like dominoes toppling through time. Or we could just say that this morning I awoke to not one, but two giant piles of shit on the kitchen floor, and Scout still somehow jumping for joy—my old bounder once again—in anticipation of a walk, which I associate with pressing business, but he clearly associates with tearing down the sidewalk, the gentle morning sun on his back, the wind in his ears, free at last.

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