As you can see, I had to forage around in the mud the other day.
It was a bit embarrassing, the whole thing.
We were down on the river in the morning and The Boss likes to toss my ball right across to the other side - several times, mind you - so I have to swim there and back. He reckons I need the exercise or I'll get fat, because I eat everything.
Now, there's an island in the middle of the river and I like to alight retreat there when The Boss gets tiresome. Usually that happens after the second swim, when I'm pretty bored with the idea. Once I'm there he can't get near me; he calls out to me to come back but I just wag my tail a lot, looking like I'm pleased to see him and everything - but that I'm not quite sure what he wants me to do.
So I made my landing and found an open patch where I could flick my ball around and catch it. Trouble is, it was a bit soft after being under water since late January and pretty soon my patch turned into a mud hole - quite a big one, since I had dug it all up myself while dropping the ball in it and watching it fly out with mud all over it.
The mud hole got bigger and bigger and the next time I dropped the ball in it, I couldn't find it. Or feel it. I dug a lot more mud out right around it but...no ball.
There was nothing left to do but to try and sniff it out. I've had a go at doing that under water before and it usually doesn't work very well but I had no choice - The Boss was standing on the sandbar laughing at me. Sure enough, every time I sniffed the mud sucked up my nose and I had to sneeze. He thought this was very funny.
After a few frustrating minutes I was relieved to see The Boss was wandering off home for breakfast, chortling away and telling me to forget it. But my pride was at stake.
So I stuck at it - a dog has to, really - and I was closing my eyes and nosing around the mud hole until I finally felt the ball. I grabbed it like a flash - along with a mouthful of mud. It was somewhat undignified but I came back with my ball: swam back to the sandbar, took a short cut up the river bank and swiped The Boss's trousers for good measure, as I ran past him on the track at high speed.
It's not every day you can get some small revenge on The Boss but you can never let a chance go by. This time he deserved it. Woof!