Ever since Virgi visited the other day and brought her “shih tzu poo” (that has to be the worst possible name for a dog breed) along, Mom’s been getting dog envy. I don’t know why; she’s never really hinted at wanting a dog for herself before. She’s suggested we should maybe get one for Micah, but that’s always remained in the realm of distant possibilities. We were more or less of the viewpoint that before Micah was allowed a dog, he would have to show a lot more responsibility in, well, everything. But for the last few days, she’s been going around saying, “I want a do-o-o-o-og.” On Sunday, she was a bit late in coming home. That’s correct, she brought home a dog.
Not just any dog. It’s a puppy, but it’s not cute. I think she said he’s half terrier and half beagle, but from what I can tell he’s just all ugly. He’s got short nappy brown fur, his tail is bobbed, and his head is almost comically too large for his body. Moreover, he’s pretty pungent. Well, I’ll give him a chance anyhow, I figured. Even though we’ve already got two cats, one ferret, and (not to forget) four humans, and quite enough trouble balancing all of them. Now we get to double the load: because a dog is at least as much hassle as all of those put together. With the dog she bought a black metal cage and a leash and some house training stuff. (This, it should be noted, was not free, nor was the dog.)
So what about the dog? Well, he’s got a lot of energy, which is all well and good, but he uses it in being really enthusiastic and easily distracted. It’s like he’s on speed. I took him out for a walk, and he couldn’t keep on task; kept getting wrapped around his leash and stopping and starting for no good reason. Occasionally he would start running until he forced me to pick up speed too, and then he’d run in front of me and stop suddenly. I think he did that at least twice in the course of a very short walk today. He’s also the yippy type. This is why I prefer cats. They only occasionally get in your way, and they’re almost always silent. I can add to that: they don’t need to be walked, there are no leash laws for them, they can retract their claws, and, importantly, they bury their own poop. I’m going to abandon the pretense of giving this dog a fair trial now, because you’ve already figured out that I’m not overly fond of him. What does he have going for him? I can’t think of anything. He’s not cuddly, he’s not very friendly, and he’s needy.
But, because I’m the one who doesn’t have any work or school until later on this month, it of course falls to me to take care of the dog during these integral first few weeks. That means I have to walk him once or twice before Micah comes back. Now, on the face of it, that doesn’t seem too tall an order. But, I also have to tolerate him for the whole time. That’s not so easy. Here’s what happens after Micah and Mom leave for school and work, putting the dog in his cage. Silence for a minute or two. Then the dog starts getting lonely. “Yeep. …Yeepyeepyeep.” Nothing doing, pal, I’m not getting out of bed at 0800. “Yeepyeepyeep. Yeep! Eef! eef! eef! Wrrrhooooyeeyeeyeeeeeee. Wrrrhoooooyeep! yeep! yeep!” Then he calms down a moment, but that’s to give me a false sense of security. “Yeeyeeyeeyeeyeeyeeyeeyee! Weef! Weef! Eeeerooooooooeeeep. Eeeerooooooooeeeep. Eeeeroooooyif! yif! Eeyoooooooooooowoowoowooo!” Then he calms down again, but briefly. “EEEEOOO! WEEWEEWEE! weeWERFoowoowoo. WERFoowoowoo. WERFYEEPYEEPYEEPYEEP!! EE YEE YEE YEE YEE YEE YEE YEE!! WEEF WEEF WEEF!! AUROOOOOOOOWEEEEEOOEEEEEEEEEEEEE” BLOODY HELL MAKE IT STOP. So then it’s either resign to waking up, and let the dog carry on like that until I take him out, or I can let him sleep on my bed so I can get back to sleep. In the latter case, don’t forget that he’s still pretty pungent. And I get to roll in his essence until I get up. Hooray for smelling like dog.
Meanwhile, the cats are feeling shunted, and from what I can tell, no one’s paid any attention at all to the ferret since the dog came. Make no mistake. The dog is the beginning of a new era, fifteen years of nuisance. This thing is going to grow up to be huge. Karl appraised it yesterday and predicted 60 pounds, if not 80. It won’t get any more cute or cuddly either, so the best to hope is that it’ll start acting with a little more common sense and quit arguing by volume. That is, if we don’t do what I would do, and take it back and say, “We made a mistake. It turns out we weren’t actually ready to have a dog.” Just because we’ve bought some accessories, doesn’t mean it’s too late and we’ve irretrievably taken him on for the rest of his life. It’s still quite possible, I’m sure, to realize that it’s just not going to work, and tell the dog-selling people such, so they can find owners more prepared and less overworked with other animals.
The other other option is Dad’s. He got the ferret in retaliation for Mom’s most recent cat; he says a dog results in a raccoon.
File under: irrelevancies