There’s nothing that will put a smile on your face quite like a dog with a case of the zoomies. I’m not sure what’s going through their minds as they spontaneously combust into motion besides the wind whistling between their ears, but I am sure of its effect on me.
For those of you who’ve never seen a dog with the zoomies, the best way I can explain it comes from a line in the Charlie Daniels tune, Uneasy Rider. Imagine dogs running around “… steppin’ and fetchin’ like their heads was on fire and their asses was catchin.’” and you’ll be on the right track.
The zoomies seem to descend on them like an unsuspecting parishioner in a gospel church getting filled with the spirit. And then, just as quickly as it descended, it’s gone, leaving its victim to gawk at the gawkers as if they were the crazy ones.
As a dog lover, I’ve come to envy this behavior above almost all others that dogs possess; I mean who wouldn’t love the idea of going bat shit crazy in front of a bunch of people and having them think fondly of the experience? This may explain why I liked Andy Kaufman so much.
Dogs themselves seem to have mixed feelings about it. Done alone in the company of humans it usually produces laughs, titters, and guffaws; followed by a reward of some sort for the exceptional effort put forth. However, done in the presence of other dogs the reactions can vary wildly.
Tag You’re It!
This attitude is favored by young dogs and puppies. It usually starts with a group standing around staring at one another going “I don’t know, whadda you wana do?” Suddenly, one of the dogs starts zooming about as I’ve described before. Traversing the area like a drunken Tasmanian Devil the dog arrives back where it started and stops as if nothing ever happened. Then, just as suddenly, another dog is infected and continues the spasmodic, quick time march. This much studied phenomenon is often the basis for the scientific theories of cold fusion and can be observed at doggy day care throughout the land.
This attitude is prevalent when younger dogs get the zoomies in the presence of older dogs. There is much eye rolling and tongue wagging displayed by the older dogs as they wonder what kind of parent lets their kids run around like that.
Don’t Get Along Little Doggie!
This is another attitude displayed by older dogs observing the zoomies, especially those of the herding persuasion; anything moving that fast and erratic needs to be herded, barked, and nipped into submission. Nothing drives a herding dog crazier than a spontaneous stampede of one. It’s like being slapped in the face with a gauntlet.
I guess when it comes down to it, the zoomies remind me of what it’s like to be young and carefree and old and grumpy; admiring and admonishing the things that made and make me like my favorite animal on the planet. Silliness is a beautiful thing.