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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Dog-Park Adventures 4: BFF in Training

Harley met a lot of little doggies over at our little Bark Park but he met one little guy today that was just the absolute cutest.

His name is Frankie and he is an English Bulldog.

Frankie is four months old, already about 20 pounds and as docile as a kitten.

Harley is almost three years old, 7 pounds and savage.

I want them to be best friends.

Frankie wants to play with Harley... and Harley doesn't want to have anything to do with Frankie, of course.

It all started like this:

We arrived at the park around 4:30. I had gone to the post office right after work, had checked to see if anyone was on the Lil Guy Side, and sure enough (!) people were there, so I raced home to get the little maggot, and we raced back to the park.

Harley started with his usual squirmy old shenanigans as soon as we got there because he thinks he can hold his own with the Big Boys. He cannot because he is a wimp. He would get trampled. Harley likes his personal space, only he doesn't realize he likes personal space because rarely does anything ever intrude on that space.

So I had to keep him in a pure headlock until we got to the Lil Guy Side.

We got in through the gate and Harley was acting like a 3 year old kid in a solid temper tantrum, you know when they get all limp and try to slide out of your arms? That was Harley when we got to the gate. He was desperately trying to taste freedom.

I was going to let him down until I saw the Bulldog on the Lil Guy Side. And I almost had a heart attack. Bulldog + Harley Wimpface = not so much a time.

The owners said he was just a baby bulldog and he was placid and he wasn't much of a playmate and all that stuff.

In fact, the two dachshunds there were much more aggressive and one of them was barking up a storm. Enough that it was obvious that the little bulldog was really no threat, as he was overwhelmed with the situation.

Harley was not overwhelmed at all.

He busted right in and introduced his furry arse.

He actually went over and lifted his leg on the bulldog owner's leg. You can't really apologize enough when that happens, I have learned.

So I kept my eyes on all the furry ones, to make sure that the smallest one (mine) didn't get roughed up by the bulldog and the barkers.

It was all going well. Then Frankie started to get a little more comfy and started to come out of his shell. One barking dachshund was trying to get him to play but the noise was just too much, so he would stop playing. When they were occupied elsewhere, Frankie would come over to try to get Harley to play.

But Harley was walking around on his back legs, trying to get me to pick him up because he didn't want to play with the little-kid bulldog. Plus, the little-kid bulldog was over twice his size. So he was getting bullied except the little-kid didn't know he was a bully.

It looked like Harley was a trick-performing dog, when really he isn't - he is just a big wimp.

So we had a barking dog, a Maltese walking on its hind legs and an English bulldog puppy trying to convince the circus dog to play by pouncing at it...

Yes, pouncing.

The English bulldog was trying its very best to pounce. On Harley. And my little boy was having none of it.

Frankie the bulldog was in full pouncing practice mode for awhile, and Harley was the target. In a Nintendo Super Mario game, some of the characters are able to Ground Pound. When a character like Bowser does it (see the link for his info), it seems like you are frozen for a few seconds and those seconds make a world of difference in game-playing ability.

That is what Frankie and Harley reminded me of today: Frankie was Bowser and Harley was Mario. Harley was trying to get to me and Frankie was ground pounding in an effort to play. Except, in Fankie's case, it was more like Ground Pouncing.

Frankie was also learning how to use his little voice - so pouncing and barking in that little puppy voice. He doesn't even have real teeth yet - he has those little puppy needle teeth.

He was trying to smash himself on Harley, and would sometimes lose control of his legs, or get tired, and just lay straight out on his belly.

He was seriously too cute.

Harley was absolutely savage with him.

For Harley, there was no playing with Frankie. Harley was just doggie-glaring at him. Then Frankie would come over and stand by me and wait for Harley to come over, too. Harley would stand on his back legs and lean against the back of my knees to try to get me to pick him up.

Frankie would come around to the front and poke his head through my ankles, right into Harley's face.

Harley would bark "ROWRF!" in a sort-of scream-bark. He was so mad at the surprise attack. Frankie thought the whole thing was a game.

Then the barking dog would jump in and bust the whole thing up because he thought they were playing. Frankie would get scared and run back to his owner.

Eventually, we left because Harley was thirsty and I wanted to watch Flashpoint, which was already half over. My boy had some fun, was terrorized a bit and wanted to go home. His BFF-in-training looked tired because he was cuddling up with his mama, too.

At that point, we were done with the Lil Guy Side of the Bark Park for today.

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