Wednesday, October 24, 2007

When Good Pets Go Bad

Oh, my sweet, sleeping dogs.....look at them just lying there all nice and warm and cozy by the fire; all snuggled up to each other. As if everything is right with the world. In their world, yes, everything is right as rain.

This picture was taken back when, well, when poor ol' Luke was still alive. Boy do I miss that smelly, neurotic dog. And I mean that in the best of ways. He was MY dog. If ever there was a dog that could believe he was human, it was Luke. My "Dukie Dog" as I used to call him. He was crazy, neurotic, nutzo, as in, he could not stand to be left without me; but he was my dog. He, literally, could not be left. without. me. AT. ALL

He taught himself how to open door handles. No joke. I don't know how he did it. Must have something to do with those opposable thumbs, I don't know. I remember a day when I left the house to visit a friend who lived just a few houses down the road; closed both doors behind me, one being the inside big metal type with the round knob; the other the big glass and plasticy-type with the push sort of knob.
About five minutes or so later, we're sitting there talking and she says to me, "Deb, I think I just saw your dog run by......"

"No way! I shut both doors, how could he..." and no sooner do the words come off my tongue, and there at her door, is my deranged dog, panting and smiling, the way dogs do; "FOUND YA! COME ON, COME HOME NOW, LET'S GO, THIS WAY, I'LL SHOW YA" tail wagging, jumping, bouncing in the direction leading me to the driveway, like I'm supposed to follow. (dog owners understand!!)

You may wonder why we didn't try crating this animal. Well, as a matter of fact, we did try. Several crates. First we tried the large plastic one that has the teenie tiny grated windows on the sides and the gate in front. (kind of claustrophobic if you ask me) It freaked him right out.

He bounced it across the floor, screaming and hollering; and you know, I just didn't think it was such a good idea to keep an animal in something, that, for all intense (interesting word) purposes, was supposed to be den-like. That just didn't work out for my neurotic beast.

We went with a larger, more open and airy cage. Being told he'd feel safer, and more calm in this one. And he would still be contained and safe. As would our household environment. Since, afterall, this is what we were trying to achieve.

Well, he wasn't quite in agreement with this new and improved model either. Not to mention, he managed to bend it like Beckham, break a large tooth AND rip some of his nails out, making for a very bloody mess in the process of his stand against the "safer more calm containment" we had chosen for him. And he also still squeeled like a girl in the process.

In the meantime, the neighbors thought we were doing some evil voodoo torture to him while we were out of the house; and each time we'd pull in the driveway, we'd get the most insane stares and comments from the teenage son, who was Straight-Edge and Vegan. These were two words I hadn't heard of at the time, mind you, this was 1994.


Now let me just say, we didn't really hear the screaming, because, we only crated him when we left the house. SOOOOO, the only ones to actually hear the noises coming from the basement, which is where we kept his crate, were the crazy lunatics that wanted to slit our necks while we slept, but wait, they're ANTI-VIOLENCE or are they??? neigbors. Which made things interesting.

So we weren't popular with the teenager then. We walked into our bloody mess, banged up crate, Luke missing a tooth; honestly, at first I thought he was dead. There was so much blood from his toes, and he wasn't moving. Stupid thing wore himself out. Naturally, I started crying for my dog, animal-lover that I am, my husband (at the time) was less than happy at the idea of yet another crate having been demolished by this idiot of a dog. More $$ wasted by this IDIOT OF A DOG (now steam is starting to puff from his ears), ooooh, my dog is waking up! Joy from Momma! "Dukie dog, you're alive!"

Growling heard from, hmmm, behind me??? "LUKE!! WHAT! DID? ! YOU?! DOO?!!!"

Poor dog, now he has like 300 different things going on; he's been locked up, in the dark, alone, away from ME, terrified; he's lost a tooth, 3 nails, he's bleeding, had been, OBVIOUSLY, doing this all day while we were gone, (by the looks of the exhaustion and the crate), has to pee, ahem, HAD to, not anymore. Excited now that his beloved is home, and now, the Grouch is yelling at him and he's terrified, cause he's stupid, and doesn't know why!!! Poor neurotic dog.

A week went by and Easter came. The crate was picked up by some large truck that takes the stinky stuff from the trash cans that he LOVED to knock over and rummage through. I think he planned it out very well. As I was cleaning up dinner, HAM, and trying to get the kids ready for church, and everything else ready; I set the ham on a plate and covered it, set it aside to cool, and asked him to put it in the fridge before we left.

You so know where this is going; Oh, yeah. As we were just sitting there in church, it suddenly dawned on me, that I didn't put it the fridge, I asked him if he remembered to; and he just glared at me - knowing what was happening as we sat there. That was our lunch for the week.

Oh, yes; we walked in the door and there was the plate, right where I left it. Completely free of the ham that had been so lovingly set there and covered just hours before. At my feet, was my dog, wagging his tail, licking his lips, smiling, as if to say, in his dumbest of dumbs, "thankyouthankyouthankyou"

Pushing me out of the way, literally! was my husband, trying to get to the thankful dog; who ended up needing to go out every hour with diarrhea because of the ham he ate on us.

Which brings me back to this thing:

The beast! On his first Thanksgiving, incidentally, he's lucky wasn't his last, he was 7 months old. It was our first year in this house, and we had Thanksgiving here. Big house, big family, you know the deal. We utilized the family room at the time, which was in the lower level, for the TV and games and such. I enjoyed not having a TV on the main level. Some day, I keep telling myself, and Frank, it'll go back to that. No big, bulky TV in the livingroom. Nice and quiet, sitting and reading area off the dining room. I hear Frank in my brain saying, "flat screen TV over the fireplace!" No, Frank! Your big TV is beautiful, with a great picture, and as soon as Philip is ready to leave the nest, we will move that monster back into the family room! Where was I?

We were all downstairs after dinner, watching the kids play games, talking, stuff, fire going, laughing, the sounds of holidays you know, when suddenly from over-head there was a loud noise. Everything downstairs became quiet for a brief moment, then went back to the silliness. Frank and I looked at each other, and I knew instantly what it was.... it was that damn dog,

Of course it was, because before we went downstairs; we decided to set up all of the pies on the table (what a STUPID idea) complete with forks, knives, desert plates, all the fixens. As a matter of fact, all of the dessert was there. This way, when we were ready, when we had somewhat digested our food, we'd be ready to just, "dig in," as my mother put it.

And that is what I found Rocco doing - digging in - at the ripe young age of 7 months old, he managed to scale over the chairs, that we assumed may have blocked him, (NOT) up onto my dining room table, and into an entire pumpkin pie.

What else has this dog (for better words) chewed on me? You ask! Favorite pair of black strappy sandal, from Spiegle, that I wore for 2 years and was proud was! he got ahold one of them, dragged it to the back yard and shook it like a crazed, rabid cat! I, on the hand, acted like a crazed, deranged lunatic when I saw what he had. Screamed like Luke in his crate. To this day, I have never been able to find another pair like them. I hate that dog

another favorite slip-on, from Spiegle; this was a pair of tan espadrilles, also have them in black, which reminds me - he got the heel in black, but I managed to save!grrr; anyway - the tan, he chewed the leather off both shoes and ATE the heel off one of them. Left me with the entire bottom of other. Naturally, not the saving sole to the chewed pair of the black pair. damn dog.

Red Italian boots. Yes Italian. From little old lady NOT from Pasadena, but next door. They didn't fit her, she gave them to me. I owned them for a mere 20 minutes, if that, left the computer to use the girls room, when I came back, saw one, one, ONE FREAKING SHOE!!!!! I knew it was the dog, he heard me coming like a freight train. I honestly don't think my feet touched the stairs. Ever done that? (whoa, memories of my Dad! scary)

I get to the spot where the dog lay with my shoe. Unfreakingbelievable. I'm gone for.....what how long does it take a girl to pee? 2 minutes? Maybe? The heel has tooth marks now! Oh, but not just the heel, no no, of course not, NO!! The back of the heel too, yes that does, too.

"you IDIOT!" I yell, at him, as I suddenly and without too much (well......) thinking, take the boot and smack him in the skull WITH THE HEEL! SEVERAL TIMES. He didn't move, or make a sound, he just sat there with his eyes looking up at me, and just wincing at me, when I'd come at him with the boot, yelling at him. "DON'T! (pop) YOU! (pop) EVER !(pop) EAT!(pop) MY !(pop) SHOES !(pop) AGAIN! " Before you get all in my face, thinking I'm all bad, let me just remind you of something:
Please note the differences in the head sizes here! Rocco vs Frank. Frank is a pretty big guy, and Rocco, look at the size of that noggin, for the love of all things with waggedy tails! By the way, the concrete he's sittin' on, has more intelligence.
This dog, is still trying to make friends with Nala, the 6lb cat that skins bunnies. She does have opposable thumbs AND AND he has the scars to prove it! Stupid dog! He still, everyday, goes up to her, whining, backing away, tail up in the air, whine, whine, whine - SLASH - she gets him every stinking time! Yet, tomorrow, he'll still go back for more. Incidentally, I haven't lost a single shoe to his mouth since that boot.
When I was gone away to the funny farm, just KIDDING! Close, though - I was at a Migraine Hospital for a month, a whole month away from the dogs, hey the family handled it ok, they were able to come and visit. But the dogs! Luke hardly ate at all, and didn't eat AT all the first 2 weeks. The entire time, all he did was pace from one window to the next; door to door. Waiting for his Momma to return. It makes me sad to think of him all sad like that, because he was one pathetic dog.
Poor thing ended up getting himself stuck in the office one day; the door closed behind him, and he tried to chew his way out. There is a marble strip that outside of the door, due to the tile on the floor; yeah, well, he was jumping on the door, and trying to open it with his paws and jaws - you can see where he gnawed at it. but he also was digging at the rug and chewing from the inside, which is carpeted, obviously (rug), and he pulled part of the carpet off the tacking strips. Now if you step just right, you get a nice little tack in your foot. Poor dog.
And my family did NOT handle it ok! It sucked out loud, all over the place, for all of us! And it's possible we may be in for yet another try . Different place. different circumstances. Same Migraine disease, mind you. Just - working with my doctor to get more fine-tuning.
Hey, remember Nick's costume last year? Cinnamon Toast? I'm purposely not uploading the pic yet. Anyway, this year, of course, he's going to be a Marine. I know, shocker!! But, even better than that. Not just a Marine, we're going a step better than that. Remember Phil's job? I'll post more later.
I'm feeling better I'm feeling better nyanuya nya nya nya na

ps hope you can do that

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