Off Lead


The last few months have been a private hell for my Lulu Sugarfoot that I cannot begin to understand.

It started with things like garbage torn into fragments, scratching up the kitchen door, then tearing up the kitchen floor.

The steel exterior door was the last straw.  Yes, that is blood on the door and wall.   It was everywhere.

When I got home that evening she was pitiful, bloodied, in pain, and had broken teeth.  What fear can drive a dog to lash out so in spite of injury to self?  The vet called it late onset separation anxiety, a severe case, and not uncommon in the geriatric canine.  Over two months of Prozac have had some effect, mostly a glazed-over stare.

We’ve been spending some quality time courtesy parking at our good friends, the Waddell’s, in Virginia.  Sitting under my awning by their creek was therapy I needed badly.  Lulu found some therapy of her own at the Waddell’s.

Today Lulu found her inner dog-child again.  My traveling companion, my SAR partner from years past, my mischievous and happy-go-lucky friend who wears her little heart on her K9  sleeve is back.

The creek in Milldale Hollow empties into the Shenandoah River and I believe all of Lulu’s worries flowed away with it.  She hasn’t been this carefree in months.

Like a child at a water slide she ran down the steps into the creek then scrambled up the bank to do it over again and again.

She romped in the Virginia blue bells.

She followed the scents of the river and watched the fish.

She dug in the dirt.

She messed with the butterflies trying to drink at the edge.

She rolled in nastiness and just plain acted like a normal happy dog.

When her tail curls over her back like the handle of a teacup, I know all is right in her little world.

My mud puppy.  Like I’ve said before, I hope she lives forever.

Happiness is freedom from the leash.  Joyous freedom unleashed is something every Airstreamer totally understands.

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