The Chase

When I take Waldo for his bedtime walk, we usually go right across the street to sniff out the rabbits that hang out at the Y. Waldo loves to chase rabbits, but it has been a little sad to observe that this behavior sure isn't what it used to be. Some chase! And to add insult to injury, our neighbor bunnies seem to know when it's Waldo coming. They let him get real close, knowing that he poses no threat. Last night the largest rabbit I've seen this summer was happily feeding in plain view when we crossed the street. Waldo is not too good at spotting the bunnies anymore, and so I had to help him out, but when he did get it in his sights, boy did those genes kick in. You'd think my buddy had been hired to make an instructional video: How to Look Like a Very Serious Hunting Dog in Three Easy Lessons. Forepaw bent at right angle, ears cocked back, shoulders low... creep forward one step at a time. Someone call Wild America! The hunt is on! 20 feet, 15 feet... easy does it boy. 10 feet? The rabbit is letting this mass of canine masculinity within ten measly feet? One more step, and the bunny scoots off. Go! Waldo trots in the general direction of the rabbit for about three seconds. Three seconds! That's it. Ufff. No, that's not much fun. Rabbit gone. And for a minute or so after that little fiasco Waldo seems to be avoiding me. Is he embarrassed? That's it? Yes, that's it. Who needs to chase rabbits, anyway? After all, Waldo never was a hunting dog, and his chase is the scent. There's a lesson in this, lurking somewhere around the Y, but I sense, indeed I hope, it will be many, many more walks before I figure it out.