Dogz in the ‘Hood

They say some people are cat people, and some people are dog people. Our neighborhood is a dog neighborhood.

Virtually every house has a dog, and some — like the folks across the street — have two, or three, or even four dogs. Each of these dogs has its own distinctive personality. Our house, of course, features the intellectually challenged Penny the Wonder Dog, who has the strongest ongoing chewing impulse in the history of the dog world. Next door is the constantly yapping Sassy, who bears a very stern countenance and prances around with a pig-like curlicue tail like she owns New Albany. Nearby, the angry Biscuit charges every passerby, ready to snap at their heels and doing periodic spin moves as she races pell-mell from side to side behind her invisible shock fence. In the other direction is the savvy Ms. Beagle, who likes to silently rush up on pedestrians before startling them by baying at the top of her lungs, and poor, sad Tiger, who paws the ground in frustration when the invisible fence prevents him from frolicking with every dog that goes by.

Sadder still are the dogs that never seem to get out of the house. When Penny and I stroll past on our walks, we can hear those dogs barking wildly inside their houses. These pathetic dogs obviously spend their days looking out the window, just hoping to see a little activity. It always reminds me of the Far Side cartoon where a sad-faced dog holding a violin looks out the window to see other dogs tormenting a cat. It seems unfair to keep a dog penned up inside all day.

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