If you are a “dog person,” chances are you understand dogs and their desire to get to ride in cars and hang their heads out of windows or up through the sun roof.


If you are a “dog person,” chances are you understand dogs and their desire to get to ride in cars and hang their heads out of windows or up through the sun roof.  My dogs have always loved getting to ride in the car.



They seem to enjoy the riding part, and when I come to a stop or slow down; they seem to get a little excited.  The dogs are hoping for a new adventure, a new smell or a new patch of uncharted grass I suppose.



There are dog experts who like to discuss the various reasons they think dogs enjoy car rides so much.   Some of these experts think that it is the “hunter” aspect and dogs associate the ride in the car with going on a hunt.



Other folks think that dogs enjoy the close confines of a car, the pack mentality or being “in charge” of protecting their territory – the car in this case.



Dogs love to sniff and also love the feel of the wind blowing in their face and up their nose.  I suppose there are a lot of new smells a dog gets to experience while riding around. 



Honestly, I think dogs just like looking out the car window at interesting things and taking naps.  That makes sense to me.  That’s what I enjoy.



The other morning, I dropped my car off to be serviced.  My car has over 200,000 miles, but it also has a lot of memories.  These memories include baseball teams, muddy and snowy shoes and boots, and dogs riding happily in my car.



My car seems to be nearing the end of its life.  It has served me well.



As I rode away from dropping off my car, I panicked.



I realized I had left my dog in the back of my car.



What would they think of me?



I don’t know and honestly I didn’t care.



You see, the dog I left in my car was my first dog.  He was one heck of dog.



Was…



Yes, I know, it sounds strange, but then when you think about it, there is a good reason.



My first dog was a big black Standard Poodle – his name was “Baldwin.”  One of the original German rocket scientists helped me name him.  Baldwin simply means “bold friend.” 



And that is exactly what he was…



Baldwin guarded the house, he guarded the children and he loved riding in the car.  Honestly, I think he just loved being around people he knew and could protect.



Therefore, in the back of my worn out car is a box, with a bag in it.  The sealed bag contains Baldwin’s remains.



Folks put ashes on the mantle, in fancy boxes and bottles – I figured I would put him where he enjoyed being.  In my opinion, it would be riding in the car with me.



I loved my dog and he loved me.  I think I will just let him ride with me until it’s my time to go and I’ll take him with me.



On a happier note, I got a call from home the other afternoon.  My family was yelling and screaming with joy.  



“What on earth is going on?” I asked.



“You won’t believe it!” they said.



It seems my current dog, who is walking on all fours, still getting into the trash and piling up on the sofa like a 16 year-old boy, had done something spectacular.



I asked them, “Well, what did he do?”



They said it together, still sounding like they had just finished running around the house a few hundred times, “He raised his leg and wet on a bush.”



I dropped the phone.



Then I picked it up.



I asked them, “Are you kidding me?”



They of course said, “No, he really did.”



Now I was getting excited… I asked, “Did you take a picture?”



They did not take a picture, I guess they were too excited and not prepared for this yard-changing event.



You see, my current dog, “Doolittle,” is also a black Standard Poodle.  The veterinarian classifies him as a “Giant Standard Poodle” because of his size – he’s very large and weighs close to 100 pounds.  He’s not really fat, he’s just large.



As big as he is and as old as he is (6+ years), he had never raised his leg like this before.



I do not know why, some dogs are just late figuring things out I guess.



However, I am proud to say he has figured it out.



Perhaps we will ride around in the car and stop a lot of places to celebrate and take pictures.



Then again, maybe that is not such a great idea.



If you are a dog person, you understand why I continue to let my first dog ride in the car and you also understand my excitement about my current dog enjoying our yard a little more.



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