Finding the Right Homes for Retired Hounds in the Delaware, Maryland, D.C., Virginia Area ...and Beyond!
Dog Diaries

Let It Snow!

by Merle Doughten

January 22 and 23rd, 2005, was the first significant snowfall of the year in the Delaware Valley. Being an ex-weatherman, and knowing the abuse that happens when a forecast is missed (especially snowstorms), it was nice to see everything happened almost exactly as the TV weatherman said it would.

Saturday morning about 9:45 the first flakes started to fall and within the hour 2 inches had covered the ground and it was still coming down at a pretty nice clip. The herd (Mack, Jack, and Gracie), knowing it was the weekend, had assumed the normal greyhound positions for the morning. How they know it’s the weekend is beyond me, but instead of going up to their crates, as they do every weekday morning, they were sprawled around the living room as if a sleep bomb had been set off.

Mack on the couch, Jack in the big round Orvis dog bed, and Queen Gracie using her camouflage to blend into the brown sectional in our great room. She does such a good job that if you aren’t careful you can sit right on her. I was on the computer doing what I like to do during any significant weather event: I was watching the radar.

I heard Mack get off the couch and come my way. His collar and tags jingle so much when he moves, he would never be able to sneak up on his own shadow if he tried.  Whenever I ask him if he has to go out, if he does he will shake his head. I am not kidding. We have tried it, and if he doesn’t have to go out, he will just look at you like you are speaking a foreign language. So I asked the big galoot, and he shook his head with a quick shake. He still had that sleepy “I don’t wanna go out, but I got to pee” look on his big face.

As I pulled back the curtains to the sliding door to go out on the deck, I could see him tense up. I thinking, “Uh oh, he’s not going to go out in the snow.” But that wasn’t it at all. Suddenly he was scooting in circles, round and round. His collar and tags just a jingling away. This commotion got Jack and Gracie’s attention. Next thing I know, all three are at the door doing what I would normally call the “pee pee dance”.  But that’s not what it was about, it was the snow! They were all excited about seeing the snow.

Just like little kids sitting in class at school and the first flakes start falling outside the classroom window. At that point you know no more work is getting done that day. The anticipation of getting outside to play in the snow is overwhelming. The whole class and school feel it. That is what I was watching with these three at the door.

I opened the door and the mad rush to get off the porch into the yard almost caused a nice collision, but everyone made it into the yard okay. Then they start running around aimlessly throughout the yard like the little kids just let out of school. Running in circles, around shrubs, no real clear path to follow. At one point Jack stopped, because he evidently really had to pee badly. So while in the process of doing his business, Mack ran past at full speed with Gracie in hot pursuit, snow flying in a rooster tail behind both of them. Jack, with his leg still up, took off after them leaving a yellow trail as he went.

This lasted a good 15-20 minutes, with no let up. They drove their noses through the snow, they ran laps as fast as they could. Chasing each other like it was the last day on the earth. It was a riot to watch from the warm comforts of our great room. When they finally did come in, panting and huffing, they got a quick drink and wanted to go right back out.

While they were inside, Anthony had gone out on the porch and made a path so that they wouldn’t track all the snow in the house. The pile he made was about 3-4 feet tall. The next time they were out, Jack immediately went to the pile and started digging at it like it was fresh dirt in one of my favorite flowerbeds. Digging in fresh dirt in the summer is one of his best attributes! Snow was flying everywhere. Mack who was standing behind him got a face full before he finally headed off the deck to chase Gracie again. Anthony stayed out there with them for an another 15 minutes, and they all had a blast. He would make snowballs and the dogs would chase them, but never seem to be able to find them when he threw them into the yard.

For those of you who think that greyhounds are only warm weather dogs, not all of them are, some absolutely love the snow and as long as they aren’t out for long periods of time, they can be snow hounds too! I know reading the different emails from people in the group it sounds as if there are more then a few snow dogs out there, as well as those dogs that think they will melt if they get any of that white stuff on them. My herd loves the snow, so “Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!”

Greyhounds aren't just dogs, they are a way of life!