From Peter Mayle’s A Year in Provence (1989):
The dogs adapted to the snow like young bears, plunging into the drifts to emerge with white whiskers and bucking their way across the fields in huge, frothy leaps. And they learned to skate. The pool, that just days before I had been been planning to clean and make ready for some early spring swimming, was a block of blue-green ice, and it seemed to fascinate them. Onto the ice would go the two front paws, then a tentative third paw, and finally the remaining legs would join the rest of the dog. There would a moment or two of contemplation at the curiosity of a life in which you can drink something one day and stand on it the next before the tail would start whirring with excitement and a form of progress could be made. I had always thought that dogs were engineered on the principle of four-wheel–drive vehicles, with equal propulsion coming from each leg, but the power appears to be concentrated in the back. Thus the front half of the skating dog may have the intention of proceeding in a straight line, but the rear half is wildly out of control, fishtailing from side to side and sometimes threatening to overtake.