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December 14, 2012

Goethe Settles Down

Roy Meachum

Atakan Ilmazy brought a rug to go over the carpet he provided me. Goethe chewed an edge. My oldest Turkish friend met the Weimaraner earlier.


Atakan commented favorably on the six-year-old puppy’s manners. I told him that I was the first human being that Goethe owned. Born and raised on a breeding farm in eastern Tennessee, he grew up with few people around; I got him from DC Weimaraner Rescue. As I wrote before, French granddaughter Diane Folliet in her car hauled him from a place in the Blue Ridge foothills, near Front Royal.


Diane took us for the first walk in downtown Frederick. He dumped me on my bottom; after all, he was unaccustomed to the leash and the noises of North Market Street; three times more it happened. In the weeks since the last incident happened: Nothing.


For a trainer, the Frederick Animal Rescue referred me to Holly Wallace; she came on several visits. She taught us some useful habits. But most of all, Goethe settled down; he acknowledges me everywhere. On Thanksgiving Day, we walked several blocks without the leash! He customarily goes through the back gate untethered and climbs upon the old car’s backseat at my suggestion.


We discovered the Dog Park close to Carroll Parkway and near to the old Armory. Most of all, Goethe needs exercise; he’s a muscled 85 pounds and very strong. I throw balls and toys; he frequently ignores them. He’s content to watch a myriad of dogs run up and down while he sits very close to my seated knee. To be not unfair, once in a while he joins on others’ games.


If you’re ever downtown, I’m the bearded bald guy with the gray dog. A lot of people remark on how handsome he is and inquire what happened to Pushkin. The English pointer was my constant companion for over 14 years, beyond the breed’s life expectancy. He had grown too old and crippled; several years ago he could not jump on the bed we shared. I explain he lived a long life out of love for me; I had the vet put him down out of love for him.


Each morning Goethe greets. Not rainy days, even though he’s an “outdoor” dog; he prefers sun that he can rollick in and sniff to his heart’s content. Did I mention Weimaraners are filled with curiosity? Every piece of paper he chases down. He swallows it whole, unless somebody or something intervenes – mostly another scrap or torn fragment.


Life with Goethe is seldom dull, even when he’s sleeping on the library’s love seat. My comings-and-goings he notices. In the evening, that’s how he spends time. By daylight, there’s too much to watch and see, to get into. A guy has to have his rest – even a Weimaraner.


About chewing the carpet, Atakan told his estimate would be somewhere around $300, but then I also learned the wall coverings in several rooms and the hallway are worth 10 times as much as I paid for them. I went to PetSmart and forked over around $10 for Bitter Yuck, a mist I can spray on.


Goethe will grow out the need, I was told, to munch on wall coverings – furniture and all kinds of things, I didn’t mention.


Insha’Allah! If the One God wills it!


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