Quad-Citians show off their pets in Creature Feature, appearing Sundays in the Your Home section and Mondays in the Neighbors section. This story was submitted by Richard and Joan Hamilton of Hillsdale. If you want to share your pet's story, email your submission to email@example.com and attach a photo in JPEG form. Or, send a story and photo via regular mail to Creature Feature, Features Department, The Dispatch/The Rock Island Argus, 1720 5th Ave., Moline, IL 61265.|
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Barley is a 6-year-old yellow Labrador retriever. She is our house pet and is not used for hunting.
When we lived in Ontario, Canada, in 1995, we bought a Lab from a local kennel. Barley is our third Lab from that kennel. Her name was chosen because of her yellow color.
We have always had Labradors. Barley is our fifth. They are very "people-oriented."
Barley sleeps in the house on a large dog bed, which she shares with Cinder, another Lab. Both dogs prefer being in our company inside and outside. We believe their presence in our yard helps to keep deer, raccoons, squirrels and rabbits away from the flower and vegetable gardens.
Living in the country provides Barley with opportunities that never tempted our other Labs. Late summer and fall awakens urges to pick apples from low branches, which she thoroughly enjoys eating. She stands on her hind legs to reach the apples, and also retrieves fallen apples to eat. She brings them back to the house, where she munches on them.
She also loves fresh corn. She wanders into the cornfield and picks an ear off the stalk and comes home with it. She peels the cob and eats the corn off of it. She will do this once or twice daily. We figure she affects crop production by a bushel per acre!
Barley's retrieval instincts are satisfied by chasing a tennis ball, which we heave with a chuck-it ball launcher. She watches closely as we heave it and runs very fast and tries to catch the ball as it bounces in the air. She will leap up to reach it.
If you ask her, "Do you want a treat?," she will go to the garage where treats are given. She then watches to catch the tossed treat.
She knows the word "eat" means mealtime. She is fed in the morning and late afternoon and will go to her dish when asked if she is ready to eat.
She is definitely a wonderful pet.
Rock island, IL Details
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