I watched Bruce as he pulled himself off the chain and ran across the street. My heart jumped to my throat as I saw my 9 month old pup lope across the road in chase of god knows what. He was all paws, legs and dangling ears by this time. An athletic body, toned and muscular, senses at their sharpest. Unfortunately, his mind was a dogs mind and a puppy mind at that was in control. So for all I know he was chasing a falling leaf, or the scent of a barbecue grill as much as anything.

I ran across the street following the barking. It was a high pitched bark, plaintive and playful. I however, had to wait for traffic to let me across. The next lesson, after house training of course, was to respect traffic. Panting, I ran at marathon speed trying to match the energy of Bruce. He was easy to spot, his brown and white coat glistened as he loped down the sidewalk. I was several houses behind and fading fast. Luckily, every tree was sniffed so he wasn’t leaving me in the dust, but I was running out of gas fast.

I saw Bruce head up a driveway, disappearing into someones yard. Straining my ears for any sound, screams, laughter I heard nothing, till I heard the clanking – that sickening sound of a garbage can being over turned. I had seen Bruce do this to my garbage can a month ago. With military precision he had found one of Kelly’s diapers and proudly took off and began to dig a hole for it.

“My god!” I thought, he was doing it again. As I approached the drive where he turned, I could now hear giggles and laughter. Completely out of breath I trudged up the drive and into the back yard. Bruce was indeed there. He had lept into a backyard swimming pool filled with neighborhood kids. I guessed the average age was about 8. Frozen in their yard chairs, sipping ice tea, were a few adults. I gave them a goofy grin and mouthed ‘sorry’ as I reached in to pull my 9 month old terrier out of the swimming pool. His brown and tan velvet coat all slicked down, water dripping everywhere. I set him down and was about to scold him for his own good but he took that opportunity to shake the water off of him, showering me with water much to the delight of the 8 year olds.

“I’m very sorry” I said to the adults, when, in unison, the occupants of the swimming pool yelled at me in unison “Can Bruce come back and play with us?”

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