December 29, 2009

Getting in Touch With My Labra

I am a dog of mixed heritage. My mother was a first generation Labradoodle and my father was a Moyen poodle — a mid-sized version of the poodle breed. This makes me a F1-B Labradoodle, though as you can tell, I am more poodle than Lab.

Still, there is some Labra in me and on occasion, that heritage comes out to play.

Today, I got to spend time with my Labradoodle heritage as well as spend time with that more latent Labra side. It started with a brisk morning walk and energetic romp on the icy play field with my friend Ollie — another mixed race pup!

Ollie and I play well together, blending our Lab needs (to fetch and run) with our poodle sensibility — silly smiles and pensive looks. It was a great way to jump start my morning.

After our frosty romp, I was left at home to eat my breakfast while Gretchen walked Ollie back to his warm abode. It is the poodle side that gets chilly since we are without undercoats. Ollie loves to be warm, so when they arrive back at his house, he races through the dog door to warm up a bit.

Meanwhile, Gretchen walked to Rosie and Tyson’s house — purebreds all the way — and took them out for a walk. They took a moment to pose on the rocks overlooking the south end of the city, but Rosie, as you can see, got bored and shook her head. She wanted to play.

But these two were frisky, frisky, frisky — Rosie in particular — so before they headed home, she took them to the tennis courts to play. Oh my, what fun purebreds can have!

A tired Rosie and Tyson were escorted home where they happily snacked on their treats while Gretchen headed out to pick up Saber. Saber was in for a treat today (as was I). After a short walk to our house — through the park and up the hill — we all piled into the car and headed to West Seattle to meet up with 3 wild Labs — Hera, Porter, and Haley. While neither of them were pure Lab, I found myself surrounded by Lab energy and if you know anything about the breed, then you know they can be full of beans!

We walked to the West Crest Off-Leash Park and there were set loose to run and frolic with all the dogs who’d come to visit. My oh my was the park every full, but we had a great time — front and back!

Saber was very social, meeting and greeting small and large dogs — some of mixed heritage just like me. Mostly, though, he followed his Lab counterparts around and checked in with me every now and then.

At one point, I got stuck on the other side of the fence. It was very confusing, but I followed everyone from one side while they walked on the other and eventually, the fence disappeared. I guess my Lab part and my poodle part could be a bit smarter, but it all worked out in the end. Whew!

It was fun to meet three new Lab friends and it was particular fun to get in touch with my Labra side. Gretchen says that my Labra side shows up every once in awhile — my need to swim, my love of my ball, the joys of fetch — but that when I’m around “real” Labs (whatever that means) she really sees the poodle in me. “That’s okay,” she says, “because we love your mixed up silly breed!”

Good thing because I wouldn’t have a clue how to separate them! Though I know there are times when she wishes I had the Lab eating gene in me!  Well, maybe not.

Until tomorrow,

Rubin — the Lab and Poodle boy!

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