Dionne has discovered digging. Of course, if we catch her in the act, we order her to stop. But we’ve begun allowing her periodic moments of freedom in the backyard — and what you see in these photos is our reward for letting our guard down.

Steve points out that female dogs dig burrows in the wild. I’ve also read about ancient dogs who buried excess food to guard and preserve it.

But I suspect there’s something simpler at work here —  a youngster’s joyful discovery that it can change the world around it. When she digs, I think Dionne has a lot in common with the toddler who splashes in her bath. “Hey — I use my hands/paws and this stuff goes flying up into the air! Wheeee!!!”

She pauses in her digging, and dirt encrusts her snout, her paws, her belly. The only good thing is that it magically falls off her, within a minute or two. We call her Teflon Dog. (Don’t ask us where the dirt goes; we don’t want to think out that.)

She looks wet here, because I sprayed her face with the garden hose (playing with her). But even so, the dirt falls off within minutes. 

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