Celeste and her friend Nicholli were looking for something to do, so I asked if they'd try doing his hair.
I suppose in their defense, I didn't define what I meant by "doing," although I should've better read the mischievous look that passed between the two girls. They accepted a little too eagerly, there was a bit too much laughter coming from the bathroom, and I couldn't recall ever needing a timer when trimming and bathing a dog.
It was nearly two hours before Chewie emerged from the bathroom. And I swear that dog was strutting big time when he did.
The hair over most of Chewie's body was cut short, but the top of his head and a wide stripe down the length of his back was left long, dyed a glowing red with a vegan dye, then teased, gelled and spiked.
He was clearly pleased with the result. He was grinning ear to ear. For the first time in ages, he wanted to play.
His sadness had lifted. For a few days, anyway.
By Tuesday night, he was lethargic again, so Celeste, her friends and I took him to Bark in the Park Night at Appalachian Power Park, where patrons can bring their dogs with them to the game. Although Chewie's hair color had already faded a bit, it still garnered a good deal of attention, which he always enjoys.
It was fun watching the dogs there, how well they all got along. It's a bit like a big canine singles bar, with everyone checking out each other's butts. Some dogs were super-social, while others were snobs, preferring to hang with humans instead of their brethren.
Chewie was so happily exhausted by the time we came home that he collapsed in the yard. I sat down beside him, slipped off his bandanna, which I draped around our once feral cat's neck.
Then I leaned back in the grass and waited for the rabbit to come and work on my feet.
Reach Karin Fuller via email at karinful...@gmail.com.