I asked Finn what he wanted for Christmas. He told me he wanted me to help him with BarkingProse. He’s right to ask me. I haven’t been doing my share. So here goes. This Bark is for my buddy Finn.
It’s funny how Finn found his voice at a young age. He barks from the heart. Even though Finn never knew the other dogs at Asherpark, he’s read about all of them and keeps asking mom to tell him stories about the Asherpark dogs.
I told Finn not to make his Christmas Bark about Asher, but he told me he couldn’t get Ash off his mind and he really wanted people to remember Ash.
Truth is when Finn started asking me questions about Ash I could hardly talk. My head got light and I could feel the tears coming to my eyes. Ash raised me and when I lost him my world changed forever. Finn doesn’t know how much I miss Ash every day.
Here’s a picture of me and Ash when I was still a little mutt. I felt so safe around Ash and we always had fun together. He taught me to play bump and run and how to make mom laugh.
When Ash died I was the only dog left at Asherpark. I was young and didn’t have anybody to hang with. Mom took me everywhere but there were times when I felt lost and lonely and didn’t know what to do with myself.
That’s when I got interested in hunting. I would sit in the big front yard for hours. When I was very still, I could hear sounds from under the ground. Suddenly a little furry thing would pop out, run across the grass, then dig a hole and disappear underground again.
One day mom told me those furry little things are moles. She said they dig tunnels under the ground and ruin everybody’s lawns. She asked me if I thought I could catch one.
I wasn’t sure but I told her I would try. Looking for moles took my mind off of Ash and it was kinda fun. It was a game I could play by myself, so I started trying to dig the moles out when they came close to the surface.
The first few times I’d dig a huge hole, get dirt all over myself and end up with a mouthful of nothing. Mom would laugh and encourage me to keep trying. I kept practicing but it wasn’t easy.
One day I heard a mole surfacing right next to me. I pounced on the mound of dirt and dug as fast as I could. Then instinct took over. I plunged my snout into the soft ground and came up with a mouthful of mole!
The mole tasted awful and it kept wiggling in my mouth. I spit it out and watched it dig its way back underground. A couple times I brought the moles to mom. One time she picked up the mole to keep me from playing with it. The mole bit her hand and wouldn’t let go. Mom said a couple words I hadn’t heard before and finally shook the mole loose.
After the mole attacked mom I decided I’d better learn how to finish the job. Next time I caught a mole I shook it real hard and the little bugger stopped breathing. That’s how I learned to kill my prey.
Pretty soon I was hunting moles every day. I caught eight moles in a single week. Once I was playing in the front yard when I saw something running along the fence line. I chased it down and caught myself a big fat rat. I was so proud of myself. I took a victory lap around the front yard so mom could see my trophy. Just then the rat twisted in my mouth, so I spit it out at mom’s feet. She grabbed the rat by the tail and threw him over the fence. I didn’t mind because that rat didn’t taste too good either.
After Finn came to Asherpark I had a buddy again. I didn’t feel so lonely and I quit hunting every day. Now I just hunt when I see an easy target. Like last week when a giant rabbit thought he could outrun me. Let’s just say things didn’t end well for the rabbit.
Most of the time I use my snout for the sport of Nose Work. I’ve been going to classes for a couple years now and just got my badge for the odor recognition tests. I’ll tell you more about that later, but for now I gotta run.