Patti Soldavini

Goliath

In Uncategorized on 01/01/2011 at 2:14 am

The dog who would be Goliath. Most people probably don’t know that Weimaraners were originally bred to hunt large game, large as in BEAR and DEER. (Which of course would make New Jersey the perfect home for these dogs.) Then, according to the Weimeraner Club of America, they were “converted to a fur and feathers” dog, as in hunters of picnic basket-sized prey. Make no mistake. Olive is a very confident dog, approaching strangers (with and without candy) and other dogs in full alpha mode with her head proudly held high, chest thrust forward and her cigarillo-like tail wagging so fast it can slice a tomato cleaner than a Ginsu knife. In these moments she reminds me of a 5-year old child who innocently believes that the world is there only to make them happy. However, my sweet-tempered pooch is not what I’d consider brave. Standing in the middle of my rural acre of property late one night, waiting for Olive to deposit some black gold, she goes into red alert and starts to stalk something on the other side of the split rail fence dividing my neighbor’s property from mine. The low growling which had immediately preceded the deliberate and focused stalking now erupts into apocalyptic barking. “HOLY CRAP,” I think as I am on the verge of barely controlled panic. IS IT A BEAR? A COYOTE? A BOBCAT? Yes, these animals are all indigenous to New Jersey. Even mountain lion, which I learned when one was found spitting at cars on Rt. 17 in Mahwah a year or two ago. While I am standing there mentally processing the possibilities, the flexi-leash continues to unwind with such ferocity, I think I actually smell smoke. And then, in what seems like a nanosecond, with the deft coordination of a ballerina, Olive pirouettes and races back toward me at the speed of light…and hides behind me. Like I said, confident, but not brave.

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