Dogwarts headerDogwart's Last week I received another card from Dogwart’s, asking for my attendance at a Dogs & Divination screening. Apparently all dogs are not cut out for divination, so each student is asked to do a water bowl reading. The result determines which Dogwart’s students should receive further instruction; the others are encouraged to continue to use their water bowl for drinking purposes only.

I pranced up to Professor Hagrid’s hut at the appointed time. Honey and Bach were also there waiting near the garden, as well as three or four Hufflepups. At exactly two o’clock, the door opened. Inside the doorway stood the current Headmistress of Hogwart’s, Hermione Granger-Weasley. I was so surprised and excited to see my puppyhood hero, my tail began wagging uncontrollably until it was swishing back and forth with such enthusiasm my whole body was wagging. She smiled at me, gave me a quick pat, and invited us all to take the path around back to the Magical Creatures ring.

Of course, I started down the path at once. I wanted Headmistress Hermione to see my initiative. Once around back, Professor Hagrid came into view. He was busy at the fire pit, stirring a bubbling copper cauldron. It gave off a tangerine-colored steam with the smell of lavender and cloves. “Don’t turn up your noses, pups. I know you’d prefer the scent of liver, but lavender will help you relax while you’re divining,” he announced as he waved us over. Nearby, there was a line of four, large, ruby-colored dog bowls filled with water. Headmistress Hermione asked us to pair up and find a dish. My partner ended up being one of the Hufflepups, a small white terrier named Daisy.

Just as we were getting settled, Headmistress Hermione gave a loud whistle. “As the Headmistress of Hogwart’s, I’d like to welcome and congratulate you for being chosen as part of the first-ever first-year class at Dogwart’s Puppy School of Magic. I’m sure most of you know I didn’t enjoy my first Divination class. In spite of first impressions, I have come to see there are those who do have the gift…and dogs in particular have special talents in divination. If you are a pup with prediction propensities, we want to give you the best training possible. There will be some of you today for whom the water bowl doesn’t reveal the future; you may be better suited to other forms of magical insight.” We looked around at each other nervously. “I will now ask you to read the water bowl for your partner. Take a strong sniff of lavender and clove before you begin.”

divination bowlDaisy stepped up to our bowl first. Out of habit, she took a gentle sip, then remembered she was supposed to look into the liquid until it revealed a message. Unfortunately, things didn’t go very well. First, she saw an ant crawling on the side of the bowl, distracting her for a minute or two. I was sitting nearby waiting for her to tell me something important about my future, so I gave a little yap to get her back on task. When she finally looked down into the bowl, she saw her own reflection. This really got her going. The next thing I knew she was barking, growling and dancing around like a mad woman. Headmistress Hermione had to carry her over to the cauldron to breathe the lavender steam, then brought her back to try again.

When Daisy returned, it really looked like something interesting was going to happen. She sat and gazed deeply into the bowl. Her whole body was still and quiet. Her eyes stopped blinking and a heaviness spread over them. I was sure she was onto something, and I couldn’t wait to hear what it was. But the next thing I knew, her face fell all the way into the bowl. She gurgled around with a start, then lifted her muzzle, dripping our divination water everywhere. “I’m sorry,” she woofed, “I fell asleep.”

And so, I never heard my future. I’m pretty sure Daisy won’t end up in Divination for Dogs class. After Professor Hagrid refilled our bowl, it was my turn…and things did heat up a bit. I’ll tell you what happened in my next Dogwart’s post! If you want to know sooner, give your water bowl a try.