Our cat Harley saw a new veterinarian yesterday — Dr. Jake Tedaldi. During the introductions, I told Dr. Tedaldi that the vet at the shelter where we got Harley in October had written that Harley was “kind.”
I want to share with you the first sentence from Dr. Tedaldi’s visit description, which he left with us:
Harley is a cautious, possibly fretful fellow, but the term “kind” may actually be quite appropriate.
This strikes me as a helpful instance of the sometimes-not-so-helpful automatic process we humans have of labeling others (and ourselves).
Harley wasn’t the only one who saw a doctor yesterday. I saw one of mine, too, and it looks like I won’t be returning to work next week.
Now, might it not seem strange that this post — describing a cat and a non-working human — has the title “Dogged Determination”?
Well, this post is about to take a turn, people.
Yesterday evening, I went for a leisurely walk with my boyfriend, Michael, at an outdoor location (rare in these parts) where dogs can run free, without leashes.
Here are some photos from that walk:
The next four photos show a dog determinedly retrieving a ball, from a pond (my apologies for shooting into the sun):
The next group of pictures features another water-loving dog. While we weren’t formally introduced to any of the other canines in this post, we were to this one: Zoomy Bear.
When I first noticed Zoomy Bear, he was living up to his name — leaping over a fence to get to the water. Unfortunately, I did not capture any of his impressive jumps on my iPhone. This was my first shot of him:
His zoomy-ness blurred him a little, there.
He became less blurry once he returned to the walkway. Here’s Zoomy Bear with his owner (whose name I did not get):
Here’s what I especially remember about that encounter:
- Departing from my usual routine, I neither (a) explained I was taking photos for this blog nor (b) got her email to send her this post.
- She told us several interesting things, including how she and Zoomy Bear celebrated his most recent birthday (which included doggy pastry),
- When I requested photos of the two of them, she said, “Oh! That will be a study in contrasts: He’s dirty and I’m clean.”
- She used other labels about herself, including “loopy.” I disagreed with that label, in my thoughts and out loud.
- Zoomy Bear’s breed name included the word “miniature” and (I think) “wolfhound.”
- My phone died after that last photo, as I was trying to show her the images.
- When I apologized for that (or, perhaps, for something else), she said, “Don’t worry.”
I am taking her advice.
I’m just glad that — despite not being able to record it on my phone — I remembered the name “Zoomy Bear.”*
Thanks to doctors who care for animals and humans, kind creatures everywhere, dogs (unleashed and leashed), those who zoom as best they can, and to you — of course! — for coming by here, today.
* I wonder if I’m spelling that correctly. It might be “Zoomy-Bear.”