Sunday, October 20, 2013

Faux Tennis Balls

A couple of weeks ago, when Charlie and I arrived at my dad's house for a visit, she hopped out of the car and entered what she thought was Tennis Ball Heaven. She raced around trying to decide which of these bright green orbs to pick up first! I began unloading the car and realized she was having a difficult time picking one up; every time she had one in her mouth, she dropped it like it was hurting her. My dad started laughing as her mouth foamed up and she became frustrated with bringing us one of these "balls" to throw.

My dad's yard is filled with black walnut trees and the "balls" she was trying to play with were the green, leathery pods protecting the walnuts inside them. The day we arrived, the trees had practically dropped all their "fruit" and the lawn was littered with these faux tennis balls. Apparently they are very bitter tasting, explaining why Charlie was having trouble picking them up!

Charlie eventually gave up trying to play with them, the taste was too terrible, but they teased her constantly with their tempting tennis-ball shape and color. When I unpacked her real tennis ball, she had a hard time differentiating the ball from the walnut-fruit, making for a fun game of hide-and-seek!

When I got home from our visit, I decided to Google the walnut fruit to learn more about them. It turns out they can be highly toxic to dogs and horses! Wow. Good thing Charlie decided to avoid them for the weekend rather than making herself sick. She has enough digestive issues as it is!