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This week we dug half a dozen balls out from under the couch. Galen was delighted to have access to them again. In particular he has been keeping tabs on the location of the bright blue squeaky one. Today, for better monitoring, he decided he needed to bring the bright blue ball on our walk. Fine, I told him, you can bring it as long as you carry it. He was agreeable to this arrangement. We set off with Galen proudly trotting along holding his precious squeaky ball up for display. Occasionally he would set it down while he sniffed something and then pick it up again when he was done.

About halfway through the walk we encountered some neighbors we rarely see. They are aloof, and the wife is scared of dogs, so they gave us a polite greeting from the other side of the road and continued on their way. Ritter tugged at his leash and gazed after them sadly when I refused to let him follow. Galen, who had meanwhile been sniffing something in the grass, glanced at me, Ritter, and the neighbors. Then he reached out and gave his ball a smart tap with a front paw. The ball went rolling merrily down the road, following the path of the walking couple. Galen then jumped up and acted like there was a huge emergency. Oh no! Escaping ball!

Galen innocently launched himself after his ball. He didn't run after the neighbors, of course; they were off limits. With singular focus he dragged me and Ritter down the street to rescue the errant ball. Alas, the ball had not rolled as far as the neighbors when we caught up to it, so neither dog was able to get the desired meet & greet. Galen collected his ball, gave one final glance at the neighbors, and concluded there was no way we would catch up to them even if he dropped the ball a second time. He reluctantly agreed to turn around and resume our original walk.
 

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Haha, what a character. He keeps you laughing.
 
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