I got Willow when she was just a few months old. This was back in 2005. We lived together in an old Airstream camper on the Vermejo Park Ranch in northern New Mexico. I was monitoring an experimental population of black-footed ferrets for the Turner Endangered Species Fund. Ferrets are nocturnal so I’d be out all night. Willow and I would go for a short walk in the morning. Then I’d settle in for my “night” of rest, and Willow would settle in for her beauty sleep. To this day Willow sleeps most of her days away curled up on the couch.
One thing that does get Willow fired up is WATER. She doesn’t like to wade in past her ankles, but she charges right in those first couple of steps. She’d play in the creek in New Mexico. Willow was in for a surprise when we moved to Maryland, and she lapped up her first gulp of ocean water. Willow enjoyed a frolic at the edge of Rocky Top Pond in Ohio. It would be cute enough if she just splashed around at the shoreline, but often Willow flips out when she plays in the water. She’ll run laps around the nearest anything before barreling full force back into the water. I’ve affectionately dubbed this behavior “crazy puppy”. Her circles get tighter and tighter until she’s cutting corners and her tail end is nearly beating her head around each lap. This excited outburst generally only lasts a few short moments, then she’ll retire back inside for another bout of rest and relaxation.
Although she isn’t much of a swimmer, Willow the Wonder Mutt should have been named Willow the Water Mutt.