Sunday, February 14, 2010

Laddie and Winter

I should probably let Laddie, our 10 year old Shetland Sheep Dog, write this Entry. Maybe he has his own Blog out there somewhere, but its URL is not known to me.

Once again, we had Snow today. These days, the Snow and the Winter just do not seem to want to stop. Our Dear Laddie loves Snow and Cold. He isn't particularly crazy about the Heat of Missouri Summers. His Fur and his Spirit were made for Cold and he just cannot seem to get enough of it. I only wish that I knew what all of this means to him. These are our observations:

While we Humans are settling in for the evening, just now Laddie was barking outside the Door. I opened it to let him in. He didn't want to come in. It is almost as if he wanted us to come outside. Max, the Cat, seemed to want to go out. I held the door open for him. No way. It was too cold. He headed away from the door and in the direction of the Wood Stove.

Laddie loves to roll in the Snow. He rolls and rolls. He seems to be telling us that Snow Baths are wonderful. We Humans just smile. It does seem to be good for his Coat.

I love to watch him catching the scent of some Creature unknown to us Humans. I wonder if the Scents are magnified in the Snow and Cold. We surely Humans surely do not have anything even close to his capacity for Sense of Smell. It's a whole different World for our Canine Companion. He catches a scent and off he goes.

His footprints in the Snow indicate that he is often on a mad gallop after a new adventure. Sets of 4 Footprints bound away into the distance, showing leaps I did not know he could make. He could have been surprised too.

He romps and he plays. He is very lively. He seems to bound everywhere. He gets so excited to go outside. He will go anywhere the Humans (especially Richard) want to venture. His favorite companion is Richard. He can often be found nipping at Richard's heels. That doesn't seem to happen much at other seasons.

He is constantly taking a bite of Snow. Maybe for him, it is a refreshing Drink.

I checked out the Shetland Islands on Wikipedia, which would be Laddie's Ancestral Home. While influenced by Scandinavian Culture historically, the Islands are now a part of Great Britain. Their location is the furthest point to the northeast of the UK. The Islands actually have a "maritime Subarctic climate". The surrounding Seas moderate the temperature, but cold, wet and cloudy are common. Their northerly location means sunlight on Winter Solstice lasts 3 hours and 45 minutes, while daylight stretches to 23 hours at the Summer Solstice.

I suppose some of this explains why Laddie loved North Dakota and why he seems to love this year's Cold Winter in Northeast Missouri. I wonder if there is an ancestral background in each of us which resonates (and is healthier) in certain climates more so than others. My, there is so much that we do not know.

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