8.28.2006
He won't share with me!
This weekend C. and I took the dogs to the lake. The beach there doesn't allow dogs, but there's a small area next to the regular beach that is still pretty shallow and doesn't have any restrictions. When we got there, there were a few people there already with 3 dogs among them. B. and S. love to meet new dogs, so they were happy to sniff and play, and B. immediately bounded into the water because he loves to swim.

After a few minutes I got our ball out and started tossing it into the water for B. to fetch. He'd paddle out there and turn around with some effort, and sloooowly paddle back, because we only take him swimming about twice a year and I don't think it comes very naturally to him at first. After a few throws, the big chocolate lab that was also there started going for the same ball. B. was faster getting out there to grab it first, but he'd start to head back and this big dog would swim up beside him and grab it from his mouth. B. would give a pitiful warning growl, but couldn't do much about the bigger dog unless he wanted to drown just to keep his precious* ball.

I did notice, however, that every time the lab stole it from him, B. would raise his eyes to me on the shore with a look that clearly said, "Mo-om! Do something!"

* C. and I call tennis balls "precious" in that creepy Gollum voice from LotR, because that is EXACTLY how B. acts around them. If he's not completely convinced you'll throw it for him immediately, he won't give it up without some delay. He's not mean about it, and isn't aggressively possessive, but if there's a ball around that he has access to, he's either sitting on it or carrying it around, or going completely nuts for you to throw it.

Once, when a ball had torn in half, we gave him one half to keep just to see what he would do. He sat down in the corner of the living room with it between his paws as if he was guarding it. Whenever S. came anywhere NEAR him he'd give a warning growl and that was the end of that - it got taken away after 5 minutes. He looked like we broke his heart.


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