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Published July 04 2010

Swift: Canine suffering a midlife ‘cur-sis’

Jake is having a midlife crisis.

Or, more appropriately, a midlife cur-sis.

For the first eight years of his life, our Golden Lab was the sweetest of canine citizens.

His tail wagged as if his cardiovascular system depended on it. He loved all creatures – two-legged, four-legged and, in the case of one bedraggled farm dog named Ned, three-legged. He listened to most commands, unless distracted by birds or UPS trucks. He was gentle with babies, kitties and parakeets alike.

Oh sure, he had his own little hang-ups, like most of us do. He was afraid of thunderstorms, barbecue grills, veterinarians, vacuum cleaners and the bathtub. And, despite his retriever pedigree, he refused to wade into water deeper than his belly.

But a few months ago, Jake started to rebel.

This makes sense because it happened roughly after his eighth birthday. (That’s 40-something for you and me.)

Obviously, he is feeling his age. Apparently, Jake is searching for his meaning in life. “Surely,” he must think to himself, “there is more to life than drinking out of the toilet and acting enthused whenever someone yells ‘squirrel!’ ”

To make matters worse, early surgical intervention has made it impossible for Jake to act out his midlife frustrations by poodle-izing.

And so he hasn’t rebelled the usual way: by getting hair plugs and howling around town with a much younger, heavily groomed Shih Tzu named Brianne.

Instead, he has turned into a bad boy. In the last three months alone, he has found more trouble than he did in his previous seven years.

This includes, but is not limited to, the following rap sheet:

Just call him Lucky Droolsiano.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Tammy Swift at (701) 241-5525 or tswift@forumcomm.com