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Dedicated to Bart, who had the Most Beautiful Tail

"It's very simple. Dogs and cats and other talented animals have tails; their tails, with their thousands of flourishes, provide them with a wonderfully complex language of arabesques, not only for what they think and feel and suffer, but for every mood and vibration in their feeling tone. We have no tails, and since the more lively among us need some form of expression, we make ourselves paintbrushes and pianos and violins..."

Hermann Hesse

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Just Give me the Busy One!


In 1996 when I first started looking for my first Cardigan Welsh Corgi to adopt, I knew exactly what I was going to get...a beautiful black and white female Cardi, about 2-3 years old...NOT!

After doing some research I found out that Cardigan Welsh Corgis were pretty rare in the San Francisco Bay Area. Actually, they were completely non-existent in rescue, nor were there any breeders in this part of California.

So I ended up adopting my heart dog, Bart, a mostly-black Corgi-Aussie mix, male, age five years. Bart was an absolute wild training, no manners, some behavioral issues - definitely NOT a novice dog! And he was SO smart. He needed mental stimulation, and a job to do. He was a serious dog and he was always on-the-job as alpha dog...a very busy fellow!

Next year, I found my Cardi female. Kenai's standard speed was 90+mph! She was happy, bouncy, and definitely had doggie A.D.D! She never walked anywhere, always ran! Always jumping, always smiling, always looking for a new way to play. AFTER we got her, only then did Carol tell me that Kenai was "The Busiest One in the Litter." Well...duh! OK, busy dog #2!

And then...along came Denali. Arriving at age 12 weeks, our first puppy. It was just plain scary how very similar Denali's personality was to her Aunt Kenai. As a teen ager, Denali was manic - a complete Wild Woman. Fortunately by that time, we also had our little Pembroke, Elbee, a rescue who wasn't supposed to be our dog, but who did add a calming influence! It took Bart and Elbee to even begin to occupy Denali!

Today, at age six, Denali still thinks she's a puppy and has only just started to grow up, now that she has assumed Pack Leader status and has a real puppy (Sage) of her own to look after. Another very busy little girl.

So when Carolyn offered us the "little cream boy," last year, I really should have known that he too would be one of the "busiest in the litter." This past weekend, while visiting at the Ranch in Napa, it was once again apparent that we have the puppy who just never seems to slow down. One by one, the other dogs all showed signs of being ready to rest, but not Sage. Late in the afternoon, he was still goading his two littermates and leading a raucous frap about the house!

So, now that we've had three Cardis and a Cardi mix, I've finally figured out that it isn't about whether I think I want a black dog, a white dog, a cream dog, a dog with manners.... No, now I know that the next time I'm looking for a Cardi, I'll just ask for The Busy One! (And I wouldn't have it any other way!)

Aren't they a great pair!

Tongues on display after a major frap session around the yard.

Sage, still ready to romp!


Posing for, they're really eyeing the squirrels!

They knew they were to "stay" for the picture, but there were squirrels in both directions that really needed chasing!

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