Celebrate these dog day August afternoons

In case you missed it and want to celebrate with your favorite four-legged companion, Wednesday was National Dog Day. Which made us think of “the dog days of summer” that we’ve been savoring, trying to soak in the heat in the face of the forecast for another tough winter in New England.

Never content to accept the surface appearance of things (think what oceanic treasures would be missed if we only looked at the surface!), we looked up the origin of the “dog days of summer” and learned it’s an ancient Greek reference to the rising of Sirius, the dog star, on the eastern horizon before dawn. In ancient times that happened in July. Now Sirius appears in mid-August. At our lat/long of 43”49.9’ N by 69”37.5’ W , Sirius – Orion’s lucky star (appearing at his heels in the constellation Canis Major), Sirius appears on the eastern horizon just “to the right” of the red-tinged Mars.

Turns out Sirius is our brightest star because it’s actually a binary system, which surprises no one who has a furry dog for a companion, inseparable, loyal and vigilant. Here at Spruce Point Inn we have a special love for dogs and welcome their partners with special treats and suggestions for places to ramble like the Boothbay Region Land Trust Trails.

While the dog days of summer really had nothing to do with the temperature or canines’ mellow response to the heat, we welcome the opportunity (excuse?) to relax in the shade, snoozing in a hammock while our dogs stretch in the cool grass below, occasionally turning an ear to a boat engine or a seagull before drifting back to chasing rabbits in their dreams.

We have learned much from the ancients and the turning of the celestial calendar of the stars. When we look up, hand resting on the warm fur of a fuzzy head we connect with more than the suns of a thousand Augusts. We measure the passage of time, the unfathomable reach of the universe and the unconditional certainties of “man’s best friends.”