Different Ways to Journal

November 5, 2021

Ever wonder what happens when you retire a tracking dog?

They don’t every really retire. Up until her death, two years later, almost exactly, Dottie was still showing me she was happy to show me all the things in the vicinity of our walk routes that had human scent on them.

The above photo is something from my archives. As I’ve been going through the downsizing process I found a folder of Polaroids from photo shoots of my artwork.

I got a kick out of seeing this. It’s not as crisp as the final slide, but that’s already in storage, and all I had to do with this is quickly scan it.

It’s a large, about 24 x 30 inch board, made into a calendar as you can see. It’s Dottie’s journal for January 2001.

Of course I helped her with the labeling, but that’s what a could trainer does right?

The “finds” are labeled as to location, description of surrounding area (snow/foliage/etc.), date, time of day, and any weather notes (because of course weather conditions influence scent conditions).

There were a few “personal items” that got written up but not saved. My students will remember their lesson on “sex spots” and realize that living as we do, near the University, which is full most of the year, with young people, who, well, you get the idea—we walked by a lot of these locations on a daily basis.

The item that most puzzled me was the large pottery shard that was found on the soft ground in a secluded, but not so secluded that you could set up a campsite, spot. I wonder where it was actually broken and who transported it to where Dottie found it. 

Fun times. 

Did I ever tell you about the time we were on a walk and she ran into the bushes by the emergency entrance to the hospital and sat completely still, her gun indication (because I didn’t want her ever dislodging anything or setting something off)?

I wore leather glove for better leash handling when I walked her so I picked the gun up, took it home, and called the police; because I sure didn’t want it around the house. 

She was so happy that day.

I was always puzzled that the police, while they picked it up, were really uninterested in it. Seems to me a gun ditched by the emergency entrance to the hospital might be of interest, especially since it hadn’t been contaminated.

I miss Dottie every day. Her bright, energetic, and adventuresome spirit. Emma chose well for me.

Think about the different ways you can journal and start one today. There is no time like the present, the now—journals help us understand that.

    • Karen Engelbretson
    • November 5, 2021

    Hi Roz. Loved thinking about Dottie and Emma again, and hadn’t heard this story! Love the calendar. So nice .

    1. Reply

      Thanks Karen. Glad you enjoyed the calendar. Thanks for walking down memory lane.

    • Bonnie Getz
    • November 5, 2021

    My childhood memory of “Huskie,” an Alaskian huskie mix, still bring a smile.
    He would let me dress him and put him into a baby buggy, and he would follow me around like he was my baby sitter, and read my books to him. I remember the memories, but wish I had clarity in remembering how he looked, so I could draw him. I have no pictures, I keep looking in magazines for a likeness.
    Your love and story of Dotty, make me miss Huskie.
    Did Inktober and enjoyed it. Since I’m not on facebook, I showed my family and friends. I hope to do it again.
    Hope you are feeling better. I am enjoying your class.

    1. Reply

      I’m so glad Bonnie that you had a fun childhood with your dog! Dogs change our lives in positive ways!

    • Georgy
    • November 6, 2021

    This is Such A Wonderful Post. I really can’t thank you enough. Every bit of this touches my heart . . .
    Thank You So Much.

    1. Reply

      Thanks for letting me know that you enjoyed this post.

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