Daisy Duke, the reluctant lake swimmer

Joe Avento • Aug 28, 2019 at 1:45 AM

The way Daisy Duke dives into her kiddie pool, we figured a trip to the lake would be good for her.

After all, she seems to love the water, splashing, drinking and generally frolicking any time she has a chance to jump in.

Once we got the the lake, it was a bit of a different story. She was somewhat of a reluctant swimmer. All the new smells in the grass and bushes leading to the water had her senses at high alert and she seemed a little afraid.

To be fair, the first step into Boone Lake where we were was about a six-inch drop and she just couldn’t seem to commit. We weren’t going to push her in, although the temptation was there as she leaned over the edge trying her hardest to make the move.

When she finally got over her fear, after about 15 minutes of poking around the edge, she was fine. She came out and went back in without hesitation several times.

Although she enjoyed her time in the water, she wasn’t actually swimming. The water was shallow enough for her to walk and that probably made her more comfortable.

Next time, we’ll find an easier entrance into the lake so she can wade out to deeper water and go for a swim.

As she was deciding whether or not to go into the water, a flotilla of Canada geese came out of nowhere.

Our fearless bloodhound let out one short whine and glanced in the geese’s direction. The scruff on the back of her neck went up briefly.

The geese took notice too, but they didn’t know this was really a pussycat hiding in a bloodhound’s body.

As the current began to take the entire gaggle back toward from where it came, she lost interest.

As it turns out, Daisy Duke isn’t much of a hunter — unless it’s an insect that catches her attention. Her interest in bugs is well known, and she continued that trend a couple of times recently.

First, what might have been the last June bug of the season walked across our front porch just as we were going into the house. You-know-who spotted it and snarfed it up.

She got a puzzled look on her face and shook her head from side to side, the way a hound does. Then she opened her mouth and spit the June bug out. He shot right out of her jowls, a little slimy, but gathered his senses enough to fly away without even touching the ground. You could hear his wings’ buzz of delight as he made a break for it.

Another encounter with a lightning bug left us laughing.

When Daisy Duke is outside and the fireflies are lighting up the yard, she gets frustrated. First the bug lights up here so she jumps in that direction. Then it’s gone. A few seconds later, it lights up there and it confuses her. She hasn’t been able to catch up with one, at least not in the air.

Suddenly, on the front porch again — there seems to be a pattern emerging — she found a pedestrian lightning bug. Again, the bug went in her mouth. This one wasn’t as fortunate as the June bug as we never saw it again.

We kept a close eye on Daisy Duke, but her belly never lit up like we had hoped. Apparently there’s no such thing as a glow-hound.

Daisy Duke also did a little gardening last week, much to our chagrin. As the tomatoes and cucumbers were picked, one giant cucumber was left behind, out of the safety of our garden fence and in range of any predator that might come along and snatch it.

It didn’t stay forgotten for long. Guess who was seen running briskly through the yard with a cucumber in her mouth? Daisy Duke chewed the end off of it and ate part of it.

She seemed to treat it more as a toy than food. She proudly brought it up onto the back deck and eventually lost interest in it.

Bones, her brother the redbone hound, grabbed it and ran into the yard, munching it with every step. He wasn’t coming in until the entire cucumber — including every seed — was gone.

It forced me to look up if cucumbers are bad for dogs. Google said they’re not so they’re both OK.

Daisy Duke has never met a stranger. She’s extremely friendly, usually too friendly. We’re working on trying to get her to stop jumping up on people.

She just wants to give kisses and hugs, but an 85-pound hound with huge paws can knock an unsuspecting friend around pretty good.

We’re planning to take her out more in public so she can get used to the attention she naturally gets, so if you see us walking through the park or anywhere else, feel free to stop by and say hello.