My Valentine’s Day started with an Ellie B aka Dogamous Pyle clamor.
Bed to floor to French doors to bed to my face. Get. Up. Da!
I know the language of our beloved 4-year-old rescue mutt well.
The 7:30 a.m. door-open resulted in a quicker exit than usual, and Ellie B scampered haphazardly around the back porch instead of beelining to the porch door to await her release to the backyard of the Little Bitty shared by my dear wife Karen and I in the Syracuse city neighborhood of Eastwood.
My puzzlement was quickly answered by the flutter of two sets of wings, owned by a pair of black birds who had decided the inch opening left because of accumulated snow was an invitation to explore what-was-what inside those screens.
Ellie B hopped about, the birds flew hither and yonder, I watched, phone/iPad cameraless but ready to direct this early-morning drama to a safe and happy ending for all involved, I schemed, hoping to fully open the door and wave my own arms in such a manner as to coax both birds back to the great outdoors.
Then an Ellie B leap snagged a bird in her mouth.
Gently, surprisingly, oh-so-gently.
The dog looked at me with both pride and a sense of wonder.
I told her to take the bird outside. Dogamous Pyle trotted down the steps, holding the stock-still, smart bird.
I told her to let the bird go. Dogamous Pyle opened her mouth, and off flew the bird, up and over the fence as Ellie B watched, stock-still, smart dog.
She rushed back up on the porch to chase bird two. But I was able to wave the partner out the door before Ellie B was able to snag it.
The dog followed that bird out the door and went about her usual business. Wow. I thought of the old Charlie Brown cartoons, of Snoopy and Woodstock, dog and bird getting along. I know our rescue mutt has plenty of shepherd in her because of her natural beauty, but these senses of hunting and grace makes me wonder more about the other breeds mixed in.
Later on, I grabbed my iPad Air, let Ellie B back out on the porch for business Round Two, and said, “Where are the birds, Ellie B?” A reenactment, of sorts.
The dog’s search was short but thorough, including under the porch steps. She got over it when I called off the dog.
Have you seen your dog interact with a wild bird? Have you seen any dog catch a bird in the wild? What did you think Ellie B was going to do with the bird?