It doesn’t take much for Dolce and Amore to realize there is a car trip on the agenda. Just the simple act of putting on socks and shoes will start the dancing chorus of excited barking. The grabbing of the car keys, the purse in hand, are more visuals for them to be on the alert. Two steps taken in the direction of the garage door has the girls pawing at the door knob to be the first one out. Nothing excites the dogs more than the thought of a trip in the car.
The crouch n’ scrunch is the side effect of frenzied scouting for the first available opportunity to bark. Loudly. It’s the first phase of searching for movement on the hike and bike trail that runs along side the road. It begins with Dolce planting herself in the middle of the back between the two front seats. Then she crouches. Scrooching down, she scrunches her shoulders and head to have the perfect view out the front window. Posture be damned, she is on the look out for fellow canines, humans, cyclists, birds, pesky flies, anything, just give her something to objectify. Okay, nothing works just as well.
Because nothing, is just as good if not better, than barking away at the possible threat a dog on a leash might pose as we drive by at warp speed. A walking human will incite her vocal chords with or without the slightest possibility a dog might be trotting next to them as we pass. A cyclist in the bike lane will receive a barking to just because. It is, therefore she will bark. There is nothing, therefore she will bark some more.
“Dogs feel very strongly that they should always go with you in the car, in case the need should arise for them to bark violently at nothing right in your ear.”
– Dave Barry
The crouch n’ scrunch is Dolce’s latest trademark in car-riding alignment. She compliments the position with a ping-pong head bobble. Right, left, right, left. Her eyes darting up and down the trail as she swings her head back and forth. Wishing. Hoping. For anything.
During the summer months, Dolce’s frustration escalates when her vision is impaired by the tall grass and weeds that sprout up along side the trail. Her brown-haired brows pull down in annoyance when she can’t lay her eyes on the short-legged canines. Those little dogs that fall below the weed line, hidden from sight. You want to really piss Dolce off? Block her view. Pull down the sun visor or lean too far over the center console where she’s on the look out and you’ll get a quick retaliation, doggy style. A strong paw and/or snout will inform you to move back to your own territory. A small yip will instruct you to put up the visor. Don’t obstruct her vista.
We are fortunate this crouch n’ scrunch is a short-lived phase. Ten miles later, Dolce has forgotten all about barking at nothing.