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Annelise's adventure with Zeke and Scout
BETHEL- On a day when the snow began to fall early in the morning and local schools were cancelled due to the threat of more than a foot of snow, Annelise Witas tagged along with her mom to spend the morning snowshoeing on her first pair of shoes.
“I like it,” stated Annelise. “And I have a friend that has the same exact snowshoes as me.”
Trudging up over a fresh snowbank and down the other side, Annelise steered clear of Zeke and Scout, as she is a bit timid of their zealous behavior, but before long, she realized they were more interested in one another than her.
The four and a half year old Rotty/Lab mixes are litter mates and have been together literally forever. They play with one another just like brothers do. They growl, they chase one another into the snow, they tease with sticks, but best of all, they are very patient and gentle with children.
As we got started down the trail, Zeke and Scout ran ahead to scope out the landscape and then came running back to make sure everyone was keeping up. They particularly enjoyed nosing at Annelise and hearing her little screeches as their wet noses met hers.
“How far are we going?” asked Annelise. “How do the dogs know where we are going? My hair’s in my face. Mom, can you help me?”
Annelise was a chatter box, but didn’t slow down, but to get her hood fixed securely, as the snow was coming down in large, wet flakes.
As the dogs smelled some deer tracks, I pointed out the tracks to Annelise.
“We were on Black Mountain and saw all kinds of deer poop, right momma?”
“No, honey, that was moose poop,” stated Sandy. “And there was lots of it, wasn’t there.”
Continuing on, the dogs found plenty of sticks to break out of the snow, they rolled to clean themselves, prompting Annelise to ask, “Why do they roll so much?”
I told her that it’s the way they bathe in the winter time. Even though they enjoy the tub, every time they go outside they can roll, scratch their backs and clean themselves in the snow.
As that seemed to satisfy her curiosity, Annelise went back to concentrating on following the larger snowshoe tracks, while teetering to remain upright.
About 30 minutes into our walk, we found a great little hill with a snow-covered stump to sit on and have a snack. Zeke and Scout scoped out Annelise’s clementine, all the while, drooling like Pavlov’s dog.
“Why do they drool like that?” asked Annelise. “How come they stare at me?”
Finishing our snacks, we moved on down the trail, hearing nothing but the dogs moving about and the sound of our snowshoes breaking through the thin crust.
As the trees began to thin and we came out into a field, Annelise seemed to struggle a little more with the depth of the powdery snow. We were planning on crossing the road and trudging down through the intervale and back, but that would have surely soured Annelise’s experience.
In the grand sense of adventure, we decided to shed our snowshoes, hook the dogs on the leash and walk the road back. At the corner we all chatted with the cows who seemed oblivious to the heavy, wet snow settling on their backs.
Turning into the driveway, Annelise stated, “I’m so happy we’re back. I am exhausted.”
I asked her how long of a nap she was going to take when she got home if she was that exhausted. She stated, “A nap. I don’t take naps. I just listen to the drums and relax.”
As for Zeke and Scout, they were just happy to be home because they knew a treat was waiting for them.
What a great way to spend a snowy morning in Maine.