LONGLEAF STORIES

full circle in the hundred acre wood

Like most Labrador Retrievers, Maggie cannot be trusted around unattended food. She is a truly gifted forager.

A few years back, when we were adding onto the house, she developed quite a reputation amongst the subcontractors as a sneak thief, many of whom lost their lunches to Maggie. She could silently jump through an open pickup truck window and steal tupperware containers full of old pizza and sandwiches, take them around to the garage and stuff them through her swinging doggie door to save for later; or snacks (she became especially fond of little bags of roasted sunflower seeds), coffee loaded with sugar and creamer from the junior food store (she would knock it over with one paw and lap it up when I distracted the workers by saying “good morning”), cans of Pepsi when she couldn’t find a Mountain Dew (which no kidding she learned to pick up with her paws and swill).

One time I saw her jump down from the cab of a pickup truck with a white plastic Walmart bag swinging from her jaw. Curious, I waited a few minutes and then went to look in the garage. Sure enough, there it was. She had left the bag near her food bowl and gone back outside again. In the bag were two unopened cans of dog food and a package of flashlight batteries. Somewhere in her doggie brain . . . . midnight snack?

The house was completed about 8 pounds later and I was left with an overweight dog with a serious caffeine habit.

It’s been tough on the Magster to get her meager cup of dull rations once in the morning and once in the evening. No more scavenging in the ruins of carpenters’ discarded Vienna Sausage cans or foraging for crumbs of Little Debbie cakes.

I guess it was only a matter of time until she went on a binge.

When I walked into the garage (Maggie’s dining room) a couple of days ago to let her  in through the house and out into the back yard, she was nowhere in sight. Usually, she would be right at the step and ready to race in, turn around to sit for a hug and some talk, then on to the back door. Not this day.

I heard a loud rattling and snuffling sound way over in a dark corner of the room. “Uh oh,” I thought. “Some critter has gotten into the garage and Maggie has it cornered.”  I still didn’t see her. The sound was coming over from behind the treadmill.

I called to her and what I saw, well, let’s just say I was totally rude to my dog and burst out laughing. You would have, too.

Maggie had found an empty 20-pound dogfood bag rolled up on top of an empty box and decided to investigate it for remnants. When I saw her, the bag was fulled stretched out and her head and shoulders were all the way inside it. Only her hindquarters and legs were visible.  Those bags are coated on the inside and are slick even before getting a frenzied licking from a dog on a diet, and so Maggie was having trouble getting out of the bag.

Yeah, I know. I should have rushed right over and pulled the bag off her head. But I was laughing so hard, that by the time I came to my senses, she had gotten herself out of her own trap. She looked at me with wild eyes, breathing hard, and made for the water bowl.

Buck and I have a friend who blames her memory lapses on being “half in the bag.” I always thought it had to do with overconsumption of hard liquor, but maybe I was wrong.

IMG_0013Classic Maggie, wearing a red clay eyepatch she picked up on one of her many adventures.

0 thoughts on “Half In The Bag

  1. Dogs are such loyal creatures…many people think the owner is at the top of the list….I know from experience (raised 2 Irish Setters) that their stomachs always come first!
    Thanks for a great story and a good laugh…^-^ Give Maggie a scratch behind the ears for me, ok?

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  2. Ah, glad she is still so on form; I remember that photo of her with coke can as your cathedral of wood was being errected. Rhys is the morsal magician here though his choice is not always food either dog or human… too boring why not try sari silk yarn, pen cartridges, foil! to name but a few. Banon looks on with amusement except if plastic is involved and then she gets really interested too. Joy.

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  3. Ah, glad she is still so on form; I remember that photo of her with coke can as your cathedral of wood was being errected. Rhys is the morsal magician here though his choice is not always food either dog or human… too boring why not try sari silk yarn, pen cartridges, foil! to name but a few. Banon looks on with amusement except if plastic is involved and then she gets really interested too. Joy.

    Like

  4. Ah, glad she is still so on form; I remember that photo of her with coke can as your cathedral of wood was being errected. Rhys is the morsal magician here though his choice is not always food either dog or human… too boring why not try sari silk yarn, pen cartridges, foil! to name but a few. Banon looks on with amusement except if plastic is involved and then she gets really interested too. Joy.

    Like

  5. Gullible says:

    My step-daughter has a yellow lab named Bonehead. To be honest, there’s more to the name, but “Bonehead” will suffice for this story.
    Bone swallowed his tongue one evening while rolling around on his back on the living room floor. He required resuscitation.
    Bone suffocated himself one day in his master’s pickup, and only the timely arrival of the master and the removal of the potato chip bag from said dog’s head prevented a fatal encounter of the Frito-Lay type.
    Your Maggie pales in comparison, and for that you should be grateful.

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  6. Beth here. . . Leslie — Maggie appreciated the scratch behind the ears (whoever it was from!), Daisy Winifred — super to hear from you;I’ve missed you; and Gullible — believe me, I am profoundly grateful that Maggie is no Bonehead! (But I’ll read her your story as a morality play, nonetheless.)

    Like

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