Exactly, what’s in a name?

By Mary Drier
I finally got around to weeding my flower gardens this weekend and planting some veggies and flowers in the area I reclaimed from proliferous weeds.
It took a couple of hours to pull all of the unwanted natural vegetation (a.k.a. weeds) out of the garden. I tossed them over my shoulder into a couple of large piles as I went so they would be easier to clean up.
Naturally, my black Labrador Retriever, Sgt., was beside me while I worked, supervising my efforts. He barked encouragement from time to time, but it was more like making sure the birds didn’t come anywhere near his mama. He’s jealous like that.
Anyway, I dug, pulled and tossed weeds into piles. When I finally reached the end, all that should have been left to clean up was a couple of big piles of weeds, but no…
True to his name, retriever, Sgt., methodically retrieved the weeds I had thought I was tossing over my shoulder into piles. He sat there so proud of himself. His pink tongue was splotched with dirt as he happily panted from all of his hard work.
Sigh. Retrievers. You gotta love ‘em.
Although Sgt. looks exactly like a “big” black Labrador Retriever, he is that and part Chesapeake Bay Retriever. I had never heard of a Chesapeake Bay Retriever so I finally got around to looking up that breed on the Internet recently.
According to what I found: “It is believed that the Chesapeake Bay Retriever breed originated when a shipwreck occurred off the coast of Maryland in 1807. The story is that there were two Newfoundland dogs onboard that survived the shipwreck and these were given to a local family.
“The family then crossed the Newfoundland’s with local retrievers and possibly native dogs which eventually led to the development of a very hardy breed that was able to swim in the cold waters in the Chesapeake Bay.
A Chesapeake Bay Retriever is a “popular dog for duck and goose hunters. There are several claims by owners of the breed that they are capable of retrieving over a hundred ducks per day with some records of dogs bringing in up to 200 per day.”
I can add another claim to their fame. They can retrieve several dozen weeds too.

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