I May Look Like A Poodle, But I Don’t Always Act Like One

Jazzy is my cockapoo; part cocker spaniel, part poodle. She looks like a poodle, but she doesn’t act like one. I always thought poodles were prima donnas. You know, spoiled and prissy, sporting coats of soft fur and flashing diamond~studded collars with bows in their hair. I’d seen so many pictures of poodles on the end of a leash looking smart and well~groomed. Can I just say, pictures can be very deceiving.

Jazzy is anything but a prima donna. The girl digs in the dirt and chases squirrels. She lies in the soot by the wood stove in winter and on the cool cement porch in the summer. She jumps on (and over) furniture, turning over chairs and knocking pictures off tables. I dare not leave anything around that is too precious to be broken. She pounces crickets that find their way into the house and she barks at every Tom, Dick and Harry that walks down the road. She’d rather run around in the rain, splash in the puddles and (I almost hate to tell you this) roll around in stinky you~know~what. Seriously, when I let her outside I cannot take my eyes off of her for one second.

Like the time I was bringing groceries in the house so I left the door open and let her sniff around the yard. When I put the last of the groceries away I sat down so I could give Jazzy my full attention and my nose immediately detected the most unpleasant odor. My white fluffy cockapoo was caked in slop…another nice word for you~know~what. There she sat in my lap, looking up at me with her little stub of a tail wagging on her backside and I believe I could just make out the hint of a smile on her ridiculously adorable face. Only I wasn’t smiling back….

“What is the matter with you?! You’re suppose to be a frou-frou dog. You’re suppose to be prissy and proper and clean and shiny. You’re suppose to wear a bow in your hair and jewels around your neck. (I tried a rhinestone collar once. It didn’t last 2 months on Jazzy. All the rhinestones fell out.)  You’re suppose to sit on your pillow and live a life of luxury. Why do you want to roll around in that mess and how dare you sit in my lap and let me pet you!?”

Yes, this is really what I said to her.

I dragged Jazzy to the bath tub and gave her a good scrubbing with sweet smelling shampoo. She hates a bath. She also hates the blow dryer, but I have to do it because poodle hair is thick and I don’t want her to mold. It’s a fight to the finish and I usually win the battle, but wouldn’t you know?  That’s when Jazzy acts like a prima donna. That’s when she gets an attitude. Like a spoiled little child mad at her mamma ’cause she doesn’t get her way she pouts.  It takes her at least 3 hours to get over it. I’m thinking….who should be mad at who here?

I’ve had this experience with Jazzy more than once. I should have learned my lesson the first time I let her outside without a leash, but I had hoped she would truly turn into a Paris poodle. It has never happened. She may look like a poodle, but she acts more like the spaniel in her. Spaniels are great sniffers and hunters. The blood of both runs in her veins. Yes, pictures can be deceiving. Jazzy is high maintenance. It takes a lot of effort to keep her clean and well~groomed. I can’t take credit, though. I’ve got a great groomer with lots more patience than I to keep her clean and sweet smelling, not to mention some great commercial equipment that makes bathing and blow drying a dog like my Jazzy a whole lot easier.

But I have to tell you. For all the high maintenance, I love my Jazzy. Poodles are smart and funny and easy to train. They’re great family dogs and absolutely love to be the center of attention. Most people who walk through our door get pawed and licked on the spot. She’s not a guard dog by a long shot. She’s too friendly. And no matter how much I fuss at her, she worships the ground I walk on. I can never stay mad at Jazzy.

How like God…

He never stays mad at me.

“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3: 23~24

Yes, I’m God’s child, but I don’t always act like it. I can be pretty high maintenance, but He has all the equipment to clean me up.  He takes me to the throne of grace where He washes me with the sweet aroma of His love that covers a multitude of wrongs. No matter how many “messes” I get myself into or how many times I cake myself in “slop” God has enough love to pick me up and put me right back in His lap where He floods me with compassion. Oh gosh…what can I say? I worship the ground He walks on.

God sees the final picture. The one where I’m a prima donna. All dressed in fine linen and wearing costly jewels. The one where I’m looking all smart and well~groomed. The one where I’m white and radiant with His glory. The one where He’s standing beside me and there’s no deceiving the eye. The one where I’m everything He knew I could be. I can only hope that what He sees in my eyes is what’s in my heart, one so full of gratitude and devotion to Him for the gift of His faithfulness to me.

Just so you know, I will never take credit for the person I’m becoming. When I act like a spaniel but look like a poodle I’m so very glad I have a Great Groomer.

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