As the temperature slowly rises, the ground thaws and bulbs start pushing up in my yard, I can see that spring is on its way. But the best way to tell that the seasons are changing in my house is by the dog tracks.
Eight little paws get into a lot of mischief out there in the yard.
Rudy is reasonably fastidious (for a dog) about getting his feet wet or dirty, but he does like to dig against my shed from time to time, and that gets his paws nicely clogged with mud and sticky plant material.
Reggie likes to throw down with the neighbor dog at the back fence, and she kicks her back legs out repeatedly in an aggressive little jig when she’s giving him what for. This builds huge mud clots on her back feet, and her front feet seem to get just as dirty for no apparent reason. (She does have exceptionally floofy feet that attract and hold all kinds of things.)
So in the springtime, I get to wash a lot of dog feet. I’ve gotten the dogs pretty well trained so that when I say “go potty and come right back, hurry up,” they stay on the lawn to do their business and actually do come right back in the house after. But when I let them out to run around the yard unsupervised, I have to scoop them up at the back door and drop them into the tub, rinse their feet, dry them off, and give them a cookie and a kiss for cooperating. Three or four times a day. Yeah, it’s good times.
The mud on Reggie’s paws was so thick this morning that I rinsed the bulk of it off into that little container and there was a half-inch thick layer of mud at the bottom when the water settled. I poured it down the toilet because I’m afraid too much dirt all at once might clog my shower drain.