Perched in her window seat, Roxie, our Boxer, used to spend her weekdays watching leaves blow across the yard and birds flit from tree to tree. She’d have a few minutes of high excitement at the arrival of the mailman, but she maintained a dignified alertness for most of the day waiting to hear the screeching brakes of the yellow school bus in the afternoon.
Then, she’d explode in a paroxysm of joy, leaping off her perch, tail wagging, and racing to the door to greet 11-year-old Robbie.
Covid-19 has changed her routine. Quarantine, I realize, is a dog’s dream come true. Gone are the long hours of staring vacantly out the window watching for someone, anyone, to come home. Gone is the disciplined feeding regimen. Gone are the brief and dutiful games of catch sandwiched in between carpooling kids to sports and working at FCG.
Now, Roxie’s days are filled with long, lazy sessions of belly-stroking on the couch. There’s always someone she can bait into play time. I can hear her ball squeaking incessantly now. She’s having the time of her life.
Sharing lockdown with the family means more people to fool throughout the day. She’s perfected that innocently yearning look that signals near-starvation, so she is getting her bowl filled three times more than normal. But even with the upgraded meal plan, she’s leaner than ever.
That’s because she’s enjoying our new ritual of long, rambling daily nature walks. Her coat glistens in the morning sun as she bounds through the yard. Freedom! She runs giddily down the trail and into the woods.
While we wait impatiently for the end of the coronavirus quarantine, Roxie, I believe, is hoping this will be the new normal. Fun! Food! Attention! A dog’s life under lockdown is basically canine heaven.