"Art" comes in diverse shapes and forms. Paintings. Sculptures. Poetry. Depending on people's personal perspectives, what makes something qualify as being "art" is a lengthier article than Santa Claus' "Naughty and Nice" list!! This I know. It all depends on perspective. Well, Rose created a bit of her own "art" the other evening.... And it was shockingly unexpected!! We had been invited to some dear friends' house for dinner. Rose stayed home. We had not seen these friends in several months. This family resides a nice drive away from us. Not quite in the country, but they do possess some land. We had already enjoyed our homemade pizza dinner, and were dispersed around their home, when it began pouring down rain. Literally. Pouring. Which is nothing out of the ordinary around here!! It rains a lot in our environment!! Then, a colossal KA-BOOM resounded. Thunder!! And it was so close to us!! I heard the thunder, its loud rumbling sound, then stood up from our friend's dining room table. I stared out their window, a combination of both thrill and worry washing over me. I love thunderstorms!! The louder they are, the better!! I love witnessing bolts of lightning stretch across ebony skies like veins within a human being's arm!! But, as I stared out our friend's window, awaiting brilliant flashes, my thoughts were unsettled. I worried. Is she alright? Rose hates storms!! Oh, I hope she's okay!! Should we go home to her? Then I prayed. Please Lord be with Rose. Give her peace. Keep this thunder away from home. Keep her out of trouble. Keep accidents at bay. Please Lord.... My thoughts spiraled out of control. I fret about Rose more than I prayed. After a short while, however, the storm passed, as they always do, and I was allowed to forget my worries. She's fine. She's fine. A little while later, we drove home. My fretting instantaneously returned. I hope she's alright.... I should have known that something was amiss the very second we pulled into our driveway. I should have known.... Our Chevy minivan's engine still running, I stepped out its sliding doors. Rose was already baying!! As though she had been crying and carrying on for a seemingly vast span of time!! Rose never starts until I slam shut our minivan's door. Or turn my key. I unlocked our magnetic white front door. I turned its knob to step inside.... Or tried, at least!! The red throw rug which lies neatly in front of our door was flopped over. This would work as a fine barrier against any masterminded criminal!! Or me!! Oh, well. Rose sometimes decides to lie on that, instead of her comically-sized dog pillow. I just smiled at our flopped over throw rug. I was completely oblivious to the concept that a nearby thunderstorm passed through here. At first. But, soon, reality sunk in. I checked our great room carpet for any accidents. Nothing!! Then, my nostrils lead me to this tell-tale odor: Dog pooh. When you own a Beagle cross, I have learned, your "hound" nose gets some training!! And smells never lie. Sure enough, located in an unusual area, was pooh. Lots of poop. It was at least two different bowel movements!! My heart sank, emotions running deep. Hot guilt brewed within me like some coffee recipe at a cafe. Oh, I felt so horrible!! Why wasn't I there for her? She was all alone!! I would have been by her side the entire time!! Oh, poor baby!! She was all alone!! I reached into my left jeans pocket for an empty plastic bag. I picked Rose's pooh up. I disposed of it outside. No need to firmly, yet patiently scold Rose. For this was no accident!! She could not help it.... I was stepping back inside, when Rose bayed at me through our clear sliding glass door like some screaming, fit-pitching toddler. She wants my attention. I figured. "Just a minute, Babe, I gotta clean up your accident!!" I told her. Attention will have to wait. Sorry!! Before I could even think about disinfecting the accident's location, somebody said: "Your dog really, really needs you. She tried to get through your door...." What? I thought, images of "Marley & Me" resurfacing within my head. I was horrified. She chewed through the door like Marley chewed through basement walls.... Mentally, I cringed at this thought. I walked through our house and comforted a baying, obviously still frantic Rose. I will disinfect the accident's location later. It could wait. Rose needed me. She depended completely on my love right then, like some fussy babe. As I stroked Rose's velvet-soft fur, trying to calm her, making verbal "shhhhing" sounds, my eyes saw the hollow wooden bedroom door. Oh my gosh.... There were scratches on the bottom that looked somewhat like they had been produced from a wild bear cub!! Plus claw marks nearly halfway up our door!! "Oh my gosh!!" was all I could say. It is beautiful, with a twist of heartbreaking. "Door art". And I am nostalgic, knowing all too well that Rose will not live forever. I never want to replace that door!! Never. Immediately, I "played veterinarian". As poor Rose was baying on the top of her lungs, I gently pried open my little girl's mouth. I checked for fractured teeth. I inspected her gums. I checked Rose's claws for any signs of bleeding. I inspected her paw pads, expecting to find slivers. But Rose was still healthy, despite the door's damage!! Huge sigh of relief!! I later noticed that the "boy's bathroom" door, which leads to Rose's "safe haven" during loud noises also had some scratches. Dogs are very observant creatures, far smarter than even experts believe. There were claw marks, scratches clear up the hollow wooden "boy's bathroom" door. To its knob!! As if, in a panic, Rose thought: Mama turns that thing. How hard can it be? I've watched her turn that knob thousands of times!! But I can't open it!! I want in there!! There was also this visible trail of dried saliva on our laminate flooring. In the living room. Down our long hallway. In the kitchen. Down our short hallway, which leads to my bedroom. As resulted, her front legs were drenched in drool. Now, whenever I leave Rose behind, the "boy's bathroom" door stays open. And I fret. Because I cannot control our weather, especially during Spring. But Rose is not Marley. Thank God Rose is not Marley....
Saturday, May 26, 2012
Blogging Friends.... If you have not already figured this out, I am a shameless advocate of mixed breed canines and mutt adoption on my Blog!! I'm unapologetic, really!! Why? Because I share my existence with a certain Beautifully Unique "Mystery Dog", named Rose!! And I love and celebrate her every second of the day!! Plus, based upon personal observation, seemingly nobody owns mongrels!! But that is just what I have seen.... So, twice monthly, I will be expressing my feelings regarding anything mixed breed!! But do not desert me, dear Friends, because of this one Blog post. Please. There will be plenty of stories to come!!
I do not enjoy evading the truth about things. Like my learning disabilities. I live with short-term memory loss and Attention Deficit Disorder. They are such a vast part of who I am as an individual, yet so well concealed from onlookers that I feel like I've got some superhero's Secret Identity!! Seriously. Tiptoeing around the truth is, quite frankly, not my style. And this mindset doesn't stop when it involves mixed breed canines!! Nope!! I prefer to, as Dennis Quaid's character, Jimmy Morris from Hollywood's "The Rookie" so straightforwardly declared: "call 'em like I see 'em." Yesterday, I was walking Rose, my youngest brother alongside me. Our neighbor had been up to his elbows in oil and grease, as he worked on some car. A noisy contraption was suddenly operated. So we crossed our street to reach the other side. Which, to Rose, is always a new adventure!! Because I seldom ever walk my little girl on the opposite end of our cul-de-sac!! Her wet black nose is allowed to investigate urine-marked locations on bushes, green grass, and fences, in places like never before!! "Pee-mail".... This is quite the privilege.... For a dog!! Three of our neighbors, Gary, Pat, and Cheryl were chatting together. Immediately, we became a part of their circle, which was neat!! They each have a long history in our cul-de-sac, mentioning names of people who used to reside here years ago. The three acted like long-lost old friends!! Gary and Pat's adult son owns this beautiful canine. He and his dog visit frequently in a white pick-up truck. I had been long wondering what kind of canine Gary and Pat's son owns. So I asked. She is a mixed breed!! Of, what, I do not remember!! And this pretty girl looks like an Australian Shepherd with black/tan markings!! But I knew that she was not a purebred!! I knew.... With that, I replied: "I thought she was a mutt!!" My voice carried this strong sense of vehemence. And then, Cheryl, who does not even own any pets, scolded, half jokingly, "Don't say 'mutt'. You'll hurt its feelings!!" What?! Has "mutt" become some forbidden word, an offensive four-letter, one-syllable word, mostly to people, like "retard" is in the Special Needs world? Not that I am equating these two. Trust me. I am not!! "Retard" isn't even in my vocabulary!! It never has been!! But.... Mutt? Over two years ago, I met this woman on some local elementary school playground. It was a Sunday afternoon, hardly anybody there. She had three large-sized dogs and daughter with her. I greeted and pet these canines. Asked what kind of dogs they were. The woman answered. They were mixed breeds!! I then responded with this declaration: "I love mutts!!" I love mutts. As soon as those words exited my lips, the woman shot me a sheepish glance, like she was telepathically mimicking Cheryl's "Don't say 'mutt'. You'll hurt its feelings!!". Really?! I own a mutt. Her name is Rose. I do not own some pedigree purebred, that's for certain!! I don't share my existence with a wanderlust, "talkative" Beagle!! No. I own a mutt. By choice, thank-you!! I own a "Mystery Dog", with definite Beagle within her DNA!! I actually prefer to use the term: "mixed breed", mainly because "mutt" is slang. But, honestly? I do not enjoy evading any truths about the fact that Rose is a mutt!! A mutt. A mutt. A mutt!! I say this loud and proud, as though I'm shouting it from atop some high mountain!! Rose is special. Irreplaceable in every way imaginable!! Rose is a Beautifully Unique mutt!! And I would not have it any other way!!
Monday, May 21, 2012
Fear. Every creature possesses it. People have fear. So do dogs. It can be of minuscule, eight-legged spiders. Or seemingly harmless loud noises. Seemingly harmless to us, but not canines!! That is what my local dog newsletter calls "Noise Phobia". Many canines suffer from this common physiological and pathological fear. Rose does. She is afraid of several things, in fact. Fireworks. Cords. Thunder and lightning. The smell of smoke. Hailstorms. The list goes on. Last week, while hiking, I learned of something else that Rose is terrified of: garden snakes!! Yep!! Garden snakes!! During a hike, we were trekking along this lengthy boardwalk. Beneath it is shallow green-colored marshy water. We have witnessed tadpoles, beautiful birds, insects and frogs along this boardwalk. Last week, there was an occasional garden snake!! I have always loved this reptile, and marveled at them!! Their slender scaly bodies. Split tongues. Pretty designs. My fingers have even touched a snake's rough body!! For this reptile, I have zero fear!! But, apparently, Rose does!! This was news to me!! We were hiking along, just Rose and I, everybody else far ahead of us. When this slender garden snake slithered gracefully through a crack on the boardwalk, like someone's lips sucking up red-orange colored tomato sauce-covered spaghetti noodles. "He" peered "his" tiny head out to greet us, then dove back under. I froze. I was in awe, completely mesmerized by this creature!! Our garden snake reemerged, his head and tail slithering through the boardwalk's crack. So smooth, in an almost crafty sort of way!! His mouth opened, and a split tongue poked out. Rose's ears perked, her forehead furrowed. She, too, was watching our garden snake!! Then, as he maneuvered his way through that boardwalk the second time, Rose took, literally, three steps back, like some spooked horse!! I smiled at my little girl. She is terrified of snakes!! I thought. I then spoke to everybody though my walkie-talkie, like some undercover police officer. Rose is afraid of snakes!! Those words repeated themselves within my head over and over again. "We can add snakes to the list of things Rose is terrified of!!" I announced through my walkie-talkie. Rose and Indiana Jones!! Suppose the thought process within my mongrel's mind prior to stepping back was: Snakes. Why'd it have to be snakes? ?
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Blogging Friends.... Thank-you so much for your many get-well wishes!! There were moments when I felt like Iron Man descending from our skies as he suddenly loses power. Going down, down, down, down.... Fast!! But I am better now!! Thank-you!!
This Blog post was supposed to be "published" on Monday. But, in a very positive way, my plans were changed!! Oh well.... To quote Daphne Reynolds' line from Hollywood's "What A Girl Wants": "Life does not always turn out the way you planned it. It's even better!" Well said, Daphne!!
The media can be a powerful resource. It is born from people's varied opinions. Research. Observation. The media can be such a powerful thing that, in many cases, it controls our beliefs. How we think. And, soon, opinions which are produced from the media, sadly, become our own. This has happened to me. Unintentionally. We used to have former neighbors who resided across the street from our suburban cul-de-sac. In a golden-yellow-colored house. This family of four lived with Gary and Carmella, their parents. Several years ago, however, along with some life changes, these neighbors moved away. They still visit frequently, though. Recently, these former neighbors added a new member to their family: An unusually calm, seemingly submissive, well-behaved, Pit Bull/Labrador Retriever puppy!! His name is Skip. I have always considered this mix strange.... A contradiction, even!! Pit Bulls can be aggressive, from what the media has lead me to believe. Toward people. And other canines. They can be fighters. At least that is what I have heard!! But Labrador Retrievers are practically "pacifists" that love everybody!! They do not have a "mean" bone within their body!! Skip is nearly always off-leash, an owner nearby. Based on what the media has lead me to believe, this makes me quite nervous!! Because, seriously. What if Skip were to maul Rose, holding my defenseless mongrel's body in his mouth, drawing blood, causing grave injury? Where would that nightmare lead us? Honestly? I would rather never witness the potential answers to these queries!! So, if I can control it, whenever Skip is outside, romping about playfully, I do not walk Rose. Why? Because Rose is my little girl!! She's the only dog I have!! It is my job, as her Mama, to keep Rose safe, best as possible!! Call me prejudiced. I can vehemently argue that I'm not!! Call me overprotective. For that, I would reply with this: "Guilty as charged!!". I already know that I'm a weird, overprotective dog owner!! Call me wrong. Because maybe I am!! But, frankly? I feel the exact same way about any free-roaming canine!! When dogs are off-leash, their masters lose control, like some skilled pilot attempting to maneuver a flying machine with mechanical issues!! It is inevitable. No matter what the "breed". It can be a Pit Bull. Or some angelically-behaved Golden Retriever mix!! It does not matter. The other day, Skip was outside, running about freely, his owner nearby. We were returning home from hours of errands, so I immediately rushed to our white, magnetic front door, as always. I heard Rose's "happy sound", her high-pitched bay. I smiled at my greeting. Rose loves her Mama so much!! I turned the key. I slipped through our door. Rose's mighty vocal chords were working overtime!! She was excitedly baying!! Then, to avoid any great escapes, I hurried Rose outside our backdoor. This way, she was safe from Skip!! Plan successful.... Right? Not exactly!! Rose was safe. This I knew for certain. However, I failed to realize, in my groggy, head-cold mental state of affairs, that Skip was frolicking about right next door!! Oops. Skip saw Rose, a happy expression written on his face. No. No. No. I thought. I acted nonchalant, yet fear streamed through my body, like rushing waters. Rose saw Skip. Her ears perked, forehead furrowed, and tail spun like the rotator blades of some helicopter. Rose's face wrinkled up in a Beagle "smile". Sans hesitation, she ran toward him. With gusto. Be calm. Otherwise you will make things worse. I coached myself. I froze, for a nanosecond, just standing there, watching the two dogs meet. Then, I walked toward them. I knelt down, to be on Rose's level. This way, I could protect her.... Even though our cyclone gate. My heart raced. The entire time. My heartbeat never slowed its pace. Thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump. I felt like I'd been watching "Signs" from M. Night Shyamalan, with its suspenseful story, and eerie-sounding music!! But Rose was.... "Ecstatic" does not even begin to describe her reaction!! No. Rose was already hyperactive, because I had just returned home. And, now? She was meeting a new "dog buddy"!! Happy day!! Let the baying begin!! Again!! Rose greeted Skip nose-to-nose through our gate. She bayed. Pawed the gate. Bayed some more. Greeted Skip through an ajar gap between the cyclone gate. Skip softly kissed Rose's face. She bayed some more!! Normally, whenever Rose is boisterous, I attempt at "calming" her down. Not this time!! When Rose met Skip, I didn't have the mind to "shhhh" her!! I could not do it!! So I allowed my Beagle cross to be a dog. And that felt so incredibly good!! I let Rose be herself!! Liberated. After all, Rose cannot allow the media to influence her "perspective". She doesn't even see Skip as a Pit Bull cross!! Rose cannot watch, or hear news coverage about these so-considered man-attacking beasts. She sees Skip as a dog, another mutt, no different from herself!! How wrong was I to think otherwise. How wrong was I.... Now, do I walk Rose when Skip is outside, playfully frolicking about? No. I do not....
Monday, May 14, 2012
Thank-you, JesseJ of http://bernertails.blogspot.com/ . I feel so honored.... In a deeply humble sort of way!!
Here are the rules:
The award is given to bloggers who have less than 200 followers and deserve recognition. The rules are as follows:
1. Thank your Liebster Blog award presenter(s) on your blog
2. Link back to the blogger (s) who awarded you
3. Give your top 5 picks for the award in a post with a copy of the rules
4. Inform your top 5 by leaving a comment on their blog
5. Post the award on your blog
Blogging Friends to pass this award to:
1. Stacey. http://thetaleoftwomaddogs.blogspot.com/
Stacey was my first faithful, and true Blogging Friend. Ever!! She owns twain Beautifully Unique girls, both mixed breeds, named Jess and Molly. Adorable dogs, those two!! Jess is Molly's mother, as Stacey adopted her, unknowingly, while pregnant.
2. Nola. http://dachshundnola.blogspot.com/
Nola is a miniature Dachshund. She "writes" the blog. Nola is a pretty girl who loves her things!! She lives with "Mom", plus three other miniature Dachshunds.
3. Life With My Dogs. http://lifewithmydogs.blogspot.com/
This Blog Author owns three dogs. Jock is a black and white Beautifully Unique mixed breed. I love the way his ears stick out, like Yoda's from "Star Wars"!! Lucy is a yellow Labrador Retriever. Some dog bit her tongue once. She has a chunk missing to prove it. But this does not keep Lucy from "smiling"!! Dusty is a Border Terrier. He's nearly one-year old. Dusty, like all young pups, loves to play!! One of his "pet" names is Terrorist.
4. Shiloh and Shasta. http://beagle-home.blogspot.com/
I do not know much about Shiloh and Shasta. Yet!! I only recently discovered them!! Shiloh and Shasta are Beagles. They "write" their blog. Shiloh and Shasta were my first Beagle Blogging Friends!! And I hope to "get to know them" better in the near future!!
5. Charlene. http://charleneandstorm.blogspot.com/
Charlene's favorite color happens to be turquoise. Storm is a Beautifully Unique Border Collie/Shih Tzu cross. He has an affectionate "smile", and his eyes are as blue as the clear Summer skies....
Friday, May 11, 2012
Blogging Friends.... If you have not already figured this out, I am a shameless advocate of mixed breed canines and mutt adoption on my blog!! I'm unapologetic, really!! Why? Because I share my existence with a certain Beautifully Unique "Mystery Dog", named Rose!! And I love and celebrate her every second of the day!! Plus, based upon personal observation, seemingly nobody owns mongrels!! But that is just what I have seen.... So, twice monthly, I will be expressing my feelings regarding anything mixed breed!! But do not desert me, dear Friends, because of this one blog post. Please. There will be plenty of stories to come!!
(It appears that I have caught a Spring head cold. Sigh.... So hopefully this blog post won't be groggy, like my sometimes-throbbing, sometimes woozy brain!!)
I do not just walk about, randomly looking myself up on the Internet. No. However, I understand that with this blog, and every opportunity it has ensued, I'm "out there" for anybody to discover!! My learning disabilities. Feelings. Opinions. Likes. Distastes. Idiosyncrasies. And, honestly? I am cool with that!! I have somehow always wanted to be known. World-famous for my gifts and abilities, whatever they are. I know. I know.... So, I strive on this blog, best as possible, to be real. Who I am here, for the most part, is no different than what people around me deal with!! That's right!! All of my positives and negatives which sometimes make me a colossal pain in the you-know-what!! Yep!! It has been an incredible, liberating feeling for me, a wonderful journey, knowing that I can be true to myself on this blog!! Several months back, I was Google Imaging "mystery dogs the best kind of mixed breed". My reason? I was curious if, perhaps, some multi-mongrel owning published author had written a reference book celebrating "Mystery Dogs". My search came up empty. Sort of!! In March 2012, I was blessed to be featured on this great blog called "Coffee With A Canine". Edited by Marshal Zeringue, Coffee With A Canine "interviews" diverse dog-owning blog authors. What an amazing opportunity to be featured on Marshal's Web site!! One of the things I wrote in my Q&A was this: "Rose is the best kind of mixed breed canine, a Mystery Dog!" Sweet.... Right? An utter sentiment about my little girl!! Well.... It was right around that time when I came to believe these words!! Truly. I never had any issues none whatsoever with Rose being a mixed breed. Nope!! I did, however, need to accept the very fact that she is, and forevermore will be, my "Mystery Dog"!! Looking back, I realize what an insignificant fret this was!! So what, if I never truly know what "breed" Rose is? Everybody's a mystery.... Right? I think so!! Anyway, here I was, Google Imaging "mystery dogs the best kind of mixed breed". And what should I find? Me!! Google's very first image, alongside countless other pictures, is the one of Rose and I which was featured on "Coffee With A Canine"!! Shock. And Disbelief. At first!! I am on Google!! Me? Google?! I moved my cursor on the image. Beneath it, written mostly in bold-print letters was: "Rose is the best kind of mixed breed". Familiar words. Wow.... My words!! All because I was featured on Coffee With A Canine!! And it gets even more incredible than that!! Last night, as I was Google Imaging "mystery dogs the best kind of mixed breed", my eyes saw a familiar canine friend's face. Rose!! On Image number 22!! You know, the professional photograph that our friend Doreen snapped? When her skills so flawlessly captured Rose's perked floppy ears, furrowed forehead, and colossal brown eyes which were fixated toward the kitchen where delicious-smelling pizza was being built? Clicking its Image on Google will lead to this blog!! Wow.... Then, yesterday afternoon, on a whim, I Googled "mystery dogs the best kind of mixed breed" again. Before even clicking Images, my eyes spied something. What I saw shocked me, in a positive way!! My blog!! Or, rather, a link to it!! Yep!! And, this because of my April 28th, 2012 blog post!! Wow.... Rose and I are "Google famous"!! And, all of this is because of a vehement passion for mongrels, which can touch my deepest most profound emotions!! Wow.... I am eternally grateful, in a deeply humble sort of way, for where this blog has taken me!! And I express gratitude toward each "Blogging Friend" that, not only takes the time to read my writing, but, also leaves comments!! What an amazing ride....
Monday, May 7, 2012
I do not like walking Rose in the dark. At. All. I cannot see, unless I'm beneath a tall, bright streetlight!! Dangers for Rose lurk everywhere!! There may be piles of wormy, dark-hued animal poop just awaiting her brown muzzle to inspect.... And eat. Sly, mask-faced, ring-tailed raccoons can lurk about. In the pitch-black darkness, it's as though everything is invisible at times!! Plus.... I am afraid of the dark. Yep!! Afraid. As though some hairy monster, resembling Sasquatch, is going to sneak up from behind me and steal my body away!! It's silly. I know. Whenever I actually enjoy walking Rose in the dark is beneath a spectacular clear blue sky filled with twinkling stars. Plus the moon. It's oft overcast and rainy around here, so a dark, sparkling sky is nothing to take for granted!! The other night, we were all eagerly anticipating something special. Something rare. Something grand. We were waiting to catch a glimpse of The Full Flower Moon!! However, there was cloud coverage. So we waited. And waited. And waited some more. We could see where this colossal-sized moon would be, as its white glow radiated the clouds. Time kept ticking. Our one-window opportunity to see the year's largest moon was swiftly diminishing, like descending sands in an hourglass. It seemed hopeless. So everybody gave up and went to bed. Except me. I still needed to walk Rose!! So, around 10PM, I saddled my little girl's red harness and snapped on her leash. Out the white magnetic front door we stepped. While walking, I kept a vigilant eye on that glow in our clouds. I watched and watched. I had never desired to witness a full moon so badly before!! Meanwhile, Rose sniffed everything.... Wooden fence posts, bushes, green grass, sidewalks. She was tracking some scent, like the Beagle within her would. Most likely another dog's urine locations. Hounds!! Then, emerging from the clouds like some shy child peering his head from behind a doorway, there it was!! Small. And not at all what I had expected. For I missed The Super Moon's time. This was just a normal, nearly-full white ball. However, I marveled at its breathtaking beauty, anyway!! Rose continued to sniff every crevice of our small world. Wooden fence posts, bushes, green grass, sidewalks.... And, no, she did not bay at the top of her vocal chords!! See, Rose doesn't howl. She tried to once, but it did not come out right!! No. Rose bays!! But my mongrel was too distracted for that!! Because between her Attention Deficit Disorder and hound instincts, she seemed mentally occupied!! But this was okay with me!! Rose's high-pitched bay could be heard clear in China!! Was this moon a colossal disappointment? Nope!!
Thursday, May 3, 2012
Are Beagles birddogs? They hunt. Rabbits, according to research. And pheasants, based on a book which I own. But does that qualify Beagles as birddogs? Yes, I suppose it does!! What about Beagle crosses? Are they birddogs, as well? Rose seems to think so!! We have encountered this beautiful, exotic-looking bird. "He" is medium-sized. This bird has black stripes like a Zebra's painted on his sides. I love that about him!! Seriously!! He has an ebony marking which wraps flawlessly around his chest and eyes that makes him look like a bandit, or something. Yep!! Bright orange feet and beak complete this unique bird. He looks as though his "great escape" was from our local zoo!! Honestly!! His "call" is equally peculiar. And noisy!! Best as I can describe it, when this bird opens his beak, he lets out something that sounds like a dying car engine!! Not so pretty!! The moment Rose first caught sight of him, during an afternoon walk, her brown velvet-soft ears perked. My mongrel's forehead furrowed. And Rose's pink tongue licked her lips. She thought he was food!! This is a game bird, according to our research. If Beagles hunt fowl--and Rose shows some strong tendencies of acting like the hound dog--then it only makes sense!! Right? So, as I stood, stock-still, completely mesmerized by this unique bird, my perspective was: Oh, he's beautiful!! I've never seen anything like him before!! What is he? Quail? Wild chicken? Where did he come from? Rose had an entirely different perspective!! Her thoughts went more like this: Mmmm.... This looks like a tasty meal!! Yummy, yummy, yummy!! Look at that meat!! Can I catch it? Can I? Can I? Can I? Let me at it!! Really, Rose? Is food all you can think about? Sometimes I feel like we are Han Solo and Chewbacca from "Star Wars"!! You know, the Harrison Ford line: "Great, Chewy. Great.... Always thinkin' with your stomach."? It is perfect!! Not that I am complaining. Trust me. I am not!! I embrace and celebrate my "food-lovin'" little girl!! Every day!! This exotic-looking creature has hung around, despite being completely out of his environment. Whenever I am walking Rose, her ears perk and forehead furrows. As he hops around in a chicken-like gait, she seems intensely fascinated!! So.... Are Beagles birddogs? They hunt. Rabbits, according to research. And pheasants, based on a book which I own. But does that qualify Beagles as birddogs? Yes!! It does!! And, can instinct be so potent that canines are birddogs even sans training? Does it come naturally, like Rose's high-pitched baying? And, are Beagle crosses birddogs? Mine seems to be!! For Rose and I certainly have two different perspectives when it comes to that game bird!!