Friday, November 5, 2010

The Swimmer

"Can those dogs swim?" I've often been asked.  Now the truth is they come from a line of hunting animals.  No, don't laugh!  Poodles were actually bred as water hunting dogs, and their name comes from a German word meaning "Splashing about in water."  We have taken Frankie and Johnny swimming a couple of times and they weren't that good at it, keeping upright and just sort of splashing with their front paws.
Frankie (L) and Johnny (R)

Frankie after the dunking

Well, we took them out for a last motor around the lake before the boat comes out to be wrapped for the winter next week.  On the return leg, Yvonne said: "Did you hear that splash?  Where's Frankie?"  A quick inventory of the boat showed we were one short in the passenger department.  A look to stern showed his little black head bobbing up and down.  By the time I had turned the boat round at full revs, he had flattened out and found his groove.  He had rejected the disappearing boat as his goal and taken a good bearing on the closest route to the shore - about 100 yards away.  He was going like a champion.  I cruised up to his port side and pulled his little sodden 23-pound body over the side.  His tail never stopped wagging as his anxious mistress toweled him dry.

So the answer to the previous question is Yes.  Well, Frankie can, and damned well at that.  I had a word with him later that evening to find out why he jumped off the back, but he refused to tell me.  I wonder if he told Johnny later on.

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