Cato lept from his nest bed in the great room, growling, barking, and bellowing. I peered at the digital clock in our bedroom. 3:36 am. Early morning on Maundy Thursday.
“There must be something out there,” I said to Keith. “I’ll go check.”
Cato raced between me and the kitchen door, with Heathcliff not far behind. The boys sleep in the great room, as pictured; Freya generally stays with us in our bedroom. When I turned on the outside light, I saw the backside of an enormous bear with beautiful, shiny black fur. There was no way I was going to let our dogs out.
“Good boy, Cato, good boy. It’s okay. Stay.” The bear had pulled a large storage bin into the center of the dining deck and dumped the bin over. Finding no food, the bear moved on. While I held the dogs inside, Keith righted the bin, returned the contents—mostly lanterns and deck furniture pillows—and closed the lip to protect everything from the coming rain. Then we all went back to bed.
Though obedient to his duty as a guard dog, Cato puppy is still learning pack rules. Old dogs Heathcliff and Freya model for him; Keith and I persevere with daily training for all three dogs.
P.S. For those who would like to see Keith and me in action, I offer Bethany Lutheran Church’s Resurrection Sunday service with Keith as reader a little before 24 minutes and me playing the offertory a little after minute 46—the music starts and eventually the camera shifts to us: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K4YPO33liJM
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