River Bottom Beagles

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Change

We went from winter to summer in just a few days.

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Winter

Like a gabby neighbor that shows up at dinner time and won’t go away.

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Sure sign of spring

Nine degrees this morning. Snow forecast for Wednesday. But these are just temporary set backs.

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Old Timer

Lots of these old silver maples in the bottoms down along the river. They can grow in places where the water is sometimes three feet deep, and like it.

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Lisa’s dog, Slimmer

I had to work.

Lisa went down to Missouri with some of the local coonhunters to look at a beagle she heard of that was for sale. She made sure to tell me several times how much fun she had and what a nice dog Slimmer was. She came with win slips from some good sized ARHA hunts from down there.

They watched Slimmer run cottontails all over and Lisa asked that boy what he was going to do with the $400? He wanted to buy his girlfriend an engagement ring. Lisa said Son, I’ll have this dog longer than you’ll have that girlfriend!

I come home from work one night and that new dog Slimmer was out running a rabbit behind the house again. She was getting thin from all the time she spent running when she was supposed to be in the kennel. I put her away and went in and gave the kids heck for letting her out.

Had to apologize when we watched Slimmer open her gate and let herself out. I put a snap through the latch to lock her in and hid and watched her work and work with her paws to get that thing open. Then she climbed up the gate, stuck her head through and grabbed the latch on the outside and gave it a good pull.

Rose was the best back then. We didn’t have a dog that could run with Rose. Slimmer could. Those two became a pair. They lived together, hunted together and became closer than sisters. And they were good. When Slimmer wasn’t getting them in some kind of trouble.

Rose came in our room in the middle of the night and jumped up on the bed and stayed there ’till morning. They had run hard the day before and were sleeping soundly on the couch when we went to bed. When we got up we found out that Slimmer had been up half the night going through the groceries and dumping stuff out on the carpet, what she didn’t eat anyway. Rose knows trouble and she wasn’t having any part of it.

Kila was doing taxidermy and wanted a snowshoe hare to mount. We went to Pete’s cabin in the dead of winter and turned Slimmer and Rose loose. Pete had been there all day and had all his dogs down and the snow was bad, old and crusty and nothing was happening. Pete didn’t even come out of the cabin when we turned loose.

Slimmer and Rose jumped one and ran it hard, close up behind it and just screaming, all over the woods and I killed it right by the cabin. Pete came out then and we let them run some more and just watched. It was like seeing Michael Jordan play basketball in his prime. You know when your seeing something that doesn’t come along very often.

All of our best dogs now came from Slimmer. Lovey, Dusty, Hope, Maybell, Stormy, Law. When I look in the kennel, when I listen to the dogs running a hare, I’m seeing and hearing Slimmer. When they climb fences and open gates and get in trouble, that’s Slimmer’s sense of humor coming out.

Lisa loved that dog.

Loved her.

I had to be at work this week when Lisa brought Slimmer to the vet in Clarissa and had her put to sleep.

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