It was a grand experiment…packing up the pup and a host of travel supplies and heading off across the country for 2 weeks of snow and family-filled adventure. We had no idea how Sparky would fare. He’d never been in a hotel room… would he bark? He’d never sat for hours in a moving vehicle, would he whine? He’d never met a lot of strangers or been in strange houses before…oh geez, would he piddle?
As a proud pup-Mom, I am delighted to add, yet another, major accomplishment to Sparky’s list of ‘firsts’. He is an outstanding traveler – happy to perch upon the console between our seats, anchored by his special seat belt, playing sentry as the world whips by. He is mesmerized the cars and trucks and can stay awake for long stretches before we see his eyes start to slowly glaze over and his body begins to relax. At that point, he gradually leans to his left, against the shoulder of whoever is driving and falls into a deep sleep – such that the driver is serenaded by a low and persistent snoring, broken occasionally by a dream induced huff or whimper.
From the east coast to the Rocky Mountains and back, he was a trooper in the hotels and a perfect guest in the many houses we visited with only one minor incident when he decided that playing with a pit bull that outweighed him by 80 lbs was not in his best interest.
Passing through Kansas, to pay our final respects to my father and introducing Sparky to the family was a source of pride and sweet memories, but then we were anxious to hit the road again for the final leg of our journey back to New York.
Returning home, Sparky dashed about the house as if he had to test every corner for intruders and did his happy dance upon discovering that all was as he left it. And, like the rest of us, after thousands of miles and days of disruption, he collapsed with relief and a sense of contentment. After all, there really is no place like home.