Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Riley: An Introduction

I don't believe I've introduced all of you to Riley. She looks quiet and innocent, right? But she's a Jack Russell (a.k.a. a Parson Russell) Terrier...so we all know better.

Some days I think who ever grouped certain dog breeds in a category called "terriers" must have really meant to call them "terrors" but decided to jazz up the spelling. A perfect example of why I think this, occurs when Riley and I go on walks through the neighborhood. Most of the time it is very pleasant (and brisk, may I add) experience. However, if Riley sees something on wheels that makes too much noise (vehicles driving too fast, delivery trucks, kids on skateboards...you get the picture) or small furry things (namely squirrels), the pleasantries are all over. I experienced a "Riley the Jack Russell Terror" morning today. While on our walk, I think we saw a squirrel running across the street or climbing up a tree at every other house we passed. That's a lot of squirrels... considering we walked almost two miles! The method she uses to greet the tree climbers is to belt out a horrible, high pitched squealing noise that probably makes my neighbors think she's hurt (or that I'm beating her), which can be quite embarassing. And with a pet who has springs for legs, in these situations, it's not only difficult to keep her quiet but also grounded. I keep trying to tell her if she really wanted to catch a furry tail she'd learn to be stealth like a cat, quiet and sneaky. But being a dog, she's just not wired that way and being a terrier she tends not to listen unless it's something she wants to hear (like "treat" or "outside").


Riley's favorite toy is shown in one of the photos above - a black, squeaky stiletto (which I have determined is indestructible and wished Target would bring back). If she has the pick of any toy in her basket it's always, never failingly the first one she goes and picks out. It's pretty funny too because guests tend to freak out when they first see it thinking she's taken one of my shoes.


There's a window in my sunporch that will never be clean due to constant nose smearing and my house always feels like it's a little bit in disarray (either from every single toy being taken out of the basket at once or Riley's hair and the carpet fibers kicked up from her running back and forth being tracked all over my hardwood floors). But the moment she gives you the "please" look when she asks to sit on your lap to snuggle, or lays on the floor crossing her front paws, or races around the house wrestling her favorite shoe to the ground, or burrows herself in her bed so deep you can no longer see her, you tend to forget about all the rest and remember why it is you wanted a "terrier terror" in the first place.

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