Dear Friends, Family, Fans and Abolish the Crate Federation Members,

I don’t know if you noticed but there’s now an official letterhead for my blog/newsletter! And, for that, I’d like to give a shout out to Jones. He thought of the title and design because he believes that stationery and letterhead should make a statement. Oddly, Jones is very serious about stationery design. And, sticks.

It has been unbearably hot this summer. Mom complains about it pretty much every July and August and this year I have to agree with her. I’ll work in any kind of weather (working is so much fun!!), but Jones doesn’t do so well in the heat. From the minute Jones steps outside, he’s panting. Although, it could be that his excitement level makes his panting worse – it’s a tough call since Jones finds everything exciting.

Anyway, the other day Jones was in his crate (he describes it as, “being held captive”) because he ran away with Mom’s shoe and refused to bring it back which ALWAYS results in crate time. Jones told me that the only reason he took the shoe was because he was “so bored” and wanted to do something. Jones confessed what he really wanted to do was run around the pasture and do laps around the training building, at breakneck speed.

I was incredulous and impulsively said, “Are you crazy? The temperature is in the low 90’s with high humidity! You had to have noticed that during potty time this morning!” Jones admitted he did notice but then forgot when he got distracted sniffing along the fence line. Our conversation continued like this:

Jones: “If I don’t get to run around at breakneck speed, what else is there to do?”

Me: “We could go swimming in the pool!”

Jones: “What is the pool?”

Me: “It’s like a huge tub of water outside! You jump in, swim to the ladder on the other side and climb out, shake yourself off right next to Mom, trot to the other side of the pool and do it all over again. It is so much fun! And, the water feels refreshing!”

POV from underneath the surface of a swimming pool looking up, making the view distorted due to the water, where a strawberry blonde golden retriever is poised to jump into the water

Jones: “Sounds a little strange. I have another question. What is a tub?”

Me: “It’s where you’ve gotten a bath.”

Jones: “I don’t want another bath!”

Me: “You don’t get a bath in a pool, you swim in a pool.”

Jones: “I’ve never been swimming. How does that work?”

Me: “After you jump into the pool (or you can go down the steps like Grady prefers to do), then you start to paddle your paws and that helps you to stay afloat and swim. You have to do that or else you sink to the bottom of the pool.”

Jones: “Swimming sounds a little complicated and you know, even though my focus work is improving, it’s not quite where it should be. Instead, I’ll just stand in the pool.”

Me: “You can’t stand in the pool because you can’t touch the bottom because it is too deep.”


Me: “Correct. But it doesn’t matter because you get to swim!”

Jones: “Let me see if I have this straight. “Swimming” involves jumping into a huge tub of water where if one does not immediately begin paddling their paws, they will sink to the bottom because standing in a pool isn’t an option because it is too deep.”

Me: “That’s right!!”

Jones: “Sounds like a suicide mission.”

Me: “It’s only scary for a second but once you start swimming, all your cares will melt away. I promise that you will love it!”

Jones: “One final question. Can I bring my stick?”

At that point, I simply walked away. I could no longer find the words to convince Jones that swimming is a most wonderful thing. Jones always asks a lot of questions about everything which can be exhausting. It’s like being interrogated by an opinionated attorney-mad scientist.

There you have it. Chapter and verse.

Dawson Earnest Huntley, LLGH
President & CEO
Abolish The Crate Federation


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