Usually rising with the sun each morning are the sounds of our hound, Jethro, with his howls, grunts, and whines. But this morning , October 13, was perfectly still and quiet. And we knew Our 16+ year old Basset had left for Glory to join Ellie Mae and Elmer Joe.
Acquired from an ad in the Glennville paper,”Free To Good Home”, Jethro and Ellie Mae came to us in 2006 shortly after we had taken up residence here. Ellie Mae was pregnant and two weeks later gave birth to 11 puppies on a cold Christmas evening. Surviving were eight of the cutest puppies Jesus had ever created, and they all found homes except for Elmer Joe who stayed here. We just had to have a Basset Hound Family!
Owning Basset Hounds we came to learn is quite an endeavor! What were Bassets bred for, what did they do? We discovered that Ellie Mae was a “French” Basset with a sharper nose, smaller frame, and beautiful round eyes. Bassets are bread for rabbit hunting and have the tricolored pattern always with a white tip on their tail to alert the hunter to there whereabouts in the brush. Their entire life is centered on their sense of smell- they literally live to smell! Their long ears and floppy lips stir up delectable scents that they just have to pursue, so yelling, screaming, whistling is in vain! They just have to follow their nose! …So we quickly discovered a fence was a must and that a fence won’t stop them! It is a miracle they never got run over on busy 169.
One morning we heard a tractor trailer truck’s horn, and there was Ellie Mae in the middle of the highway! And this was when she was nursing 8 puppies!! More times than we can remember they would go missing for days and we would spend hours and hours searching just to have a neighbor drive up with all three in the back of his truck having found them in Mendes!
So in conclusion to say, “owning Bassets is an adventure” is an understatement! They have human characteristics in the way they relate with their voices, their sad eyes, the wag of their tail, and they are so cuddly with their loose skin and long silky ears. And with their gentle disposition you just can’t not love them! Tison and all of Watermelon Creek is missing Jethro and his Basset family’s harmonious melodies at 3am, their sweet faces, and their hound dog bays as they chase something behind the pond. And Heaven has gained another hound.