With every creature--feathered or hairy--that transits the backyard, I have, on more than one occasion, witnessed a unique-looking squirrel. We always name these bushy-tailed rodents and treat them with utmost respect. Whatever tragic circumstance or malady which impacted them, they deserve our pity!! For these creatures are different.... Several years ago, there was "Igor". He suffered from this visible lump upon his body. Nobody knew why. Was he geriatric? Did an injury cause infection? Was his lump cancerous? All we know is that eventually Igor disappeared. Was his slow-moving body killed by a car? Did he pass on in his sleep? Recently, we've encountered "Patch". Or "Pirate". "He" only has one eye, on the right side of "his" head. I feel especially sorry for this bushy-tailed rodent!! Other than missing an eye, "he" is seemingly healthy.... Plump, spry, deceptive toward canines!! This squirrel sees the world with a cocked head.... As though "his" physical disability has long been present!! What happened to Patch's left eye? This question often surfaces my mind. Was "he" born this way? Did some animal attack "him"? Was "he" ill once? Whatever "his" experience, this little rodent is quite an example to everyone who observes "him"!! All except for Rose, that is!! To my mongrel, Patch is just another squirrel. One afternoon, "he" was scampering about outside. Rose spied "him". She did her little dance, which is spinning a few circles. Uh, oh. My girl desired to chase "him" away!! I coaxed her lovingly, gently tugged on the dog's collar, and declared: "No, Rose. You can't chase Patch. He's special.". Like that helped!! She cannot understand what is going on, much less my words!! After all, Rose saw a bushy-tailed rodent. Her hunting instincts had commanded her. She wanted that squirrel!! I redirected my girl with baby carrots, said: "Come....". I coaxed her lovingly, gently tugged on the dog's collar, and declared: "No Rose. You can't chase Patch. He's special.". I redirected my girl with baby carrots, said: Come....". Repeat. Repeat. Repeat!! I felt so sorry for Rose.... She just wanted a chase!! Finally, my dog gave up, stretched herself out upon our great room carpet, and fell asleep!! Patch finished "his" snacking.