Brando went in for the Big Snip Monday morning and returned the end of the afternoon, wearing the cone and looking very, very sad. We felt bad for him, but we were only following orders — the orders of CCI that he be neutered when he reached the age of six months. That’s apparently standard for all the crossed breeds. Brando’s father, Desi II, was a pure-bred Golden Retriever, but his mother, Avani, was half black lab and half Golden. (She reportedly looked like a black lab.)

Since that first night, things have picked up. Brando doesn’t seem very intent on licking his incision (which held together at least in part by some sort of glue).

So he doesn’t have to wear the cone when we can keep an eye on him — while out walking, for example, or hanging out with us in the kitchen during dinner preparations. Steve took him Christmas shopping, coneless, yesterday, and came back with reports of countless ladies swooning over Brando’s cuteness and exceedingly soft fur. He feels like mink.

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