This year Asta’s winter coat is coming in early. It started a month ago. It’s not even cold yet! I wonder what triggers the thickening of the fur. I’m noticing a grumpiness and aggressiveness along with the coat change. It’s like poor Asta has to go through adolescence annually, and spend the winter as an ugly duckling. When he emerges from his thick coat in the spring, though, we are always breath taken by just how beautiful he is.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Dr. Asta and Mr. Shiba Inu
We like to think of our BRAT rescue, Asta, as two dogs in one: sleek and beautiful in summer and insanely fluffy with thick fur in the winter. When we first got him, it was November. He was a bit of a wreck – traumatized, dirty, and not the prettiest basenji in the world. His fur was thick and rough. As winter turned into spring, his thick fur came out in great tufts and he looked for a while like he had mange. By the time summer came, his winter coat was gone, and he was stunningly beautiful. He has black dots on his skin, so when his winter coat disappeared he looked like he was wearing an ermine collar. We knew he was from a pet store, and we wondered if his breeder had accidentally bred a basenji with a shiba inu. During our first summer with Asta, we thought his fur had improved because he was healthier, but by the time winter came again, so did the thick fur. Spring in our house involves a weekly vacuuming of an unfathomable amount of fur. Last spring I was walking with Apollo and Asta in Central Park once and a man pointed at the dogs and say “Those are the dogs that don’t shed”. “Oh yes they do”, I quickly replied.