Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Dog and the Robins

Miss B. B. La La

This is our B. B. girl. The B. B. stands for Butter Butt. We named her this because when she was a pup, she was the same color as butter and sugar when you cream them together. She is one of the sweetest dogs on this planet. The woman who pawned this fluffy snowball of a home-needing pup on us nine years ago, told us she thought she would be sweet because her mother was sweet. She also told us that the cream colored pup was a Chow-Australian Shepherd crossbreed. At least, she said, she knew for sure her mom was a Chow.

As B. B. grew, we didn't see either breed in her. Finally, we asked the pup's donor if she had a photo of the B. B.'s mama. Well, upon inspection of the photograph, the mother looked like she probably was part Chow. She certainly was furry enough. But Australian Shepard? Not a chance.
A few months earlier, the last of our other dogs, Jennifer, an actual Australian Shepherd, had crossed the Rainbow Bridge leading to dogie heaven. My husband's mother was in the hospital, very ill and not expected to live. We were sitting the bedside vigil, taking care of her affairs, and hosting visiting relatives. The last thing we needed to take on was a puppy. But who ever said that death leads one along the rational path.

Now, I hadn't told my husband I was bringing a puppy home because I didn't know that I was. The pup's donor just appeared at the doctor's office where I worked one Friday. She was a patient and knew we had just lost a dog. She walked up to me with this white puff of a pup and, despite my protestations, put her in my arms. That was that. I was taking the pup home with me.

I had to give a massage and had no choice but to take her in session with me. I set her on the floor. She cried non-stop. God Bless my dog loving patient who eventually, probably wanting peace and quiet, asked to hold the little whiner while I finished her massage. Within minutes, they were both asleep.

The day B. B. came to our house to live, I remember my visiting brother-in-law walking in the front door of our house. Upon seeing her, he asked what she was doing here. I told him that she would be living with us. He gave me the evil eye. Opposite of my brother-in-law, who questioned the canine's presence with raised brows, my husband said, oh, look! There's a puppy! He bent over, scooped her small body up and wrapped his great big arms around her. B. B. was accepted then and there. Immediately.

Did I mention how much I love my husband? He accepts every homeless critter I bring home with no more than a roll of his eyes. He rolls with me as well as on me. What more can you ask of a man. Out of all that sadness and sorrow of life's passing, we found new life. New hope. We found a bouncing, peeing, pooping reminder that life goes on.

She soon grew out of her gangly puppy stage to fluid dogdom. Now, B. B.'s sweetness is in direct proportion to her dimness. B. B. is not particularly gifted with intelligence quotient, IQ. We didn't realize it at first, but as we acquired other dogs forming our new pack, it became exceedingly clear. Don't get me wrong, I am not disparaging her lack of neurosynaptic activity. In fact, it is a trait for which we have come to have an affinity. A simple-minded dog is an easy dog to handle.

Nothing pointed that out more than when we got the black dog, Maaco the Crazed, pictured in the above header photo. That dog is SMART. Too flippin' smart. We have to have triple latched gates because he learned how to open one latch and then a second. So, up went number three. He figured out how to open doors with regular knobs by using his mouth. He slides the latch on his crate with his tongue and then flips it up. The list goes on, and on, and on, and on. In our book:

Dumb dogs = Easy.
Smart dogs = Pain in the Arse.

Miss B.B. La La is EASY. She also exudes as much fur as she does sweetness. A lot! At this time of year, with the seasons changing, spring is causing hair to abandon her body...in handfuls. She is fully blowing her coat. Wispy handfuls on the floor that move everywhere with movements and vernal breezes. We vacuum every day because of Miss La La.

Every year it is the same thing. Her free falling fur is so soft and abundant that I always thought it a shame there is nothing to use it for. A friend of mine, who has lots of different kinds of animals, learned how to spin and was actually spinning her animals hair into yarn for fabric weaving. We aren't that industrious. We just suck it up with the vacuum. Often.

A few years ago, we started noticing that, during April and May, the Robins would build nests under my next door neighbor's patio cover. They would leave Marvin's yard and fly over to our yard to collect bits of dried grass and mud. They would fly back across the fence with their treasures. One morning while looking out our kitchen window, we noticed a mama Robin swoop down and, with excited quickness, pick up something special in her beak. On the flight back to Marvin's, she stopped to rest atop the fence and proudly displayed her find. It was a nice, creamy, soft tuft of B.B. fur. During these months, the Robins collect her hair to soften the twigs of their babies nest. It has become an annual spring play to which we look forward to seeing.

Photo: froggirl030 Photobucket.com

If you ever had a chance to just sit and rub one of B. B.'s ears between your fingers, you'd know how softly the little nestlings will be swaddled in her fur. The sensation is calming...soothing...protecting. It is comforting to know that Mother Earth's Recycling Center never wastes one of her creations, no matter how insignificant it seems to us.

She completely utilizes every thing she makes down to the most minute detail. Her leaves that drop to the ground from the trees in the fall of the year, break down and become fertilizer for the soil. Her dinosaurs, buried en masse eons ago, become oil oozing tar pits of future petrol. Monogamous crows take the scavenged carcasses of carrion, hydrate them with water and return them to their nesting females for sustenance, water, and perpetuation of their species. I can not think of one thing the Mother creates for which she doesn't have some future purpose.

While Randy and I view all of B. B.'s discharged and fallen hair with dismay and janitorial resignation, the Mother sees the tufts as royal cocoons for the fledgling Robin babes. Sweet Life. Sweet Love. The sweet, absolute divine architecture of the Mother reigns supreme. All Hail the Mother, we have so much to learn.


Mrsupole said...

Hi Ronda,
You know there were many groups of people who have always only taken what the earth offers and they put back what they take. Then civilized people came in and showed them how to be wasteful and destructive. We need to change this. But I saw where hair is a really great plant fertilizer, so just scoop up the har and bury it into the soil around the plants and as it slowly breaks down it fertilizes the plant. The tested plants have been doing better with that than any any fertilizer. Plus you can save the hair that gathers in your hair brush. Just put in a ziploc and save until you want to put in a plant. It also helps keeps weeds out if you just put it on top of the plant soil around the base. But it cannot be done that way if it is in a windy area.

So those birds are smarter than we are for so many things.

Please give Miss BB a big hug and a pat on the head for me. She is a beautiful dog.

God bless.

Candie Bracci said...


Oh I just love that dog!I want one too!So beautiful!

Marianna said...

Hi Ronda!

I don't know if anyone else tagged you too but I did on my blog! Come by and you'll understand :)

Take care

Reya Mellicker said...

Awwww ... she sounds wonderful. I agree with you, intelligence is not the most desirable trait in anything - dogs or other species. Kindness and sweetness trumps smartness always.

Love your equations, of course.

And your husband sounds wonderful, as he should be.

Ronda Laveen said...

Sherry: Dog hair can be a fertilizer? All these years I've tossed it out and I could have been using it? No longer. Thanks.

Candie: She's a love.

Mariann: Thanks. I'll stop by.

Reya: She is wonderful. And so is my husband, most of the time...except for today when he is making me crazy because one of his parts accounts is messed up. So, of course, I have to find all the papers he's neglected to give me. Animals he's good with. Paper? Not so much.

Brian Miller said...

BB sounds like a great friend. the thing about dogs is, if they know you, they love you without regard. its their heart not their intelligence that is attractive. nice that the hair got recycled. we havee also used it to keep deer out of the garden. have a great day!

Ronda Laveen said...

Brain: Dog hair can keep deer away? There are so many folks here who would love to know that. Thanks for the tip.

Leah said...

I've been thinking incessantly about who our new dog is going to be--we lost our best boy a couple of months ago--and this post was inspirational!!!

The ASPCA shelter calls to me...

Evening Light Writer said...

Oh there she is again..Miss B.B. ! Last time I saw her she was all dudded up with her leopard print ready for a night on the town. I love tha tpicture of her, she's smiling, doing that doggy grin thing. My dog is pretty dim but I love her dearly, she chases her tail but I can overlook that. I think we are lucky to have them aren't we. I laughed for a good 5 minutes when I found out B.B. stands for Butter Butt, Do they call her Butter Butt in the vet?

Brian Miller said...


Ronda Laveen said...

Leah: Sorry you lost your dog. Losing family members is hard. There is such a void. For a long time, it is always like you are missing or forgetting something. The right dog will come to you. I am glad you are considering adoption or rescue. There are so many really, really good dogs that are being given up because people can't afford to keep them with the current economic climate.

Mindy: They certainly do laugh when I put down her full given name. And I have to say, I have never, ever met another dog named Butter Butt. But I did have to change it to B. B. when she was a pup just so I didn't have to say, "Hi, I'm here to pick Butter Butt. You know, the dog with the anal gland problem. (TRUE STORY)--The best ones are always true.

Brian: I'll see your tag and raise you two.

Christina said...

Love the Butter Butt, she's darling!

BTW: Also love your header graphics! Are you taking all those photos? I distinctively remember the "end of the rainbow" - it was so beautiful.

Ronda Laveen said...

Christina: Thanks, the Bebster is darling. I take most of the header pictures. I sometimes use ones my brother-in-law has taken. He gets some amazing shots. The "end of the rainbow" one was his. There was a series of rainbows he captured.

Baino said...

She's gorgeous! I know exactly what you mean about soft ears! Rubbing one right now! Our little Noisy Miners scoop up horse hair after we've brushed the horses. I've found entire nests made out of their tail hair. So sweet and suprisingly strong. There's actually a book about spinning and knitting dog hair!Better A Sweater From A Dog You Know and Love Than From A Sheep You'll Never Meet

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