So I’ve got this dog. Well, actually I’ve got two dogs. Just the one boy, though. But I want to talk about this particular dog today. The other dog is incredibly sweet, just a dumb mutt with great big hound dog eyes and a long tail that wags like crazy any time you look at her. But the other one?
Now that one has issues.
We’ve had the dog for three years. Inherited it. And that’s a long story unto itself, and I won’t bore you with it. The deal is that she and The Boy bonded right away. And that’s a good thing, right? Well, yeah. But sometimes I’m not so sure.
The Dog loves us all. She’s very playful. Guards our house like she is guarding the Crown Jewels or the Pope or something. Yeah, she really does. No one can get out of their car at this house if The Dog is out. Which is fine by me. I’m not into neighborly visits these days. They can stay home and use the phone. And most of them DON’T have my cell number—so I can ignore the land line, can’t I? hee hee hee
This “guarding” instinct she has may have something to do with the fact that her mother was a full-bloodied Sharpei. I think I read somewhere that they were the dogs that guarded the Chinese emperors or something like that. She’s a funny-looking dog, too. Her head looks Sharpei—all wrinkly and stubby—but her body is PURE MUTT—and she’s completely blonde in coloring. A medium to large size dog. She was so ugly as a pup she was plum cute.
Anyway, she’s vicious. And I do mean this dog will bite. She’s bitten two people. Luckily, they were friends and didn’t sue. They knew about the dog and didn’t heed the warning NOT to get out until they checked to see if the dog was out or to call before arriving. I’ve seen The Dog chase grown men around their cars and seen those men jump up on the hood of their cars and then get on top of the car roof. She bit a dude’s bumper once and left teeth marks. He came back the next day to show me said marks. But instead of getting out, he blew the horn. Hee hee hee.
Now you probably think I take pleasure in all of this. Well, in some ways I do. I like knowing we have a loyal dog. One who takes her job seriously. But at times it can become a real PITA, too. It’s the occasional stranger who drives up from time to time that I worry about. But thankfully, The Dog is very noisy, and I always manage to rescue the stranger.
She really is a jewel of a dog, though. Last week The Boy had lit a pile of yard debris and burned it at the side of the yard. We live out in the country and don’t have town pick up for that type of stuff. I live in a pine forest. Not a good thing where fire is concerned. The next day was Saturday and the kids were sleeping in. I was in the back of the house on the comp, of course. And all of a sudden The Dog went skittering down the hallway and started barking. Well, I thought someone was out there, right? Wrong. The Dog was standing on the sofa, her nose poked through the drapes like she usually does, and she was barking like crazy. I peeked outside and low and behold, the yard was on fire where the little pile from the day before had reignited.
I sounded the alarm—screaming FIRE! All turned out well. Didn’t take long to put it out. How did the dog know? I consider her a true heroine. Had she not been the crazy, paranoid dog she is, that fire could have gotten out of control. The other dog never moved a muscle. As a matter of fact, after it was all over and I was back inside the house, I looked over at the other dog and asked, “Where were you in all this?” She lifted her head, yawned, wagged that long tail of hers, and promptly laid back down and went to sleep.
During the day when everyone is gone, The Dog sits with me at the computer. I reach down and pet her head and talk to her. She’s very loving. Loves to play with every single family member. But there is something she does each night that just bugs the hell out of me, and I can’t seem to fix it.
Remember I said she had bonded with The Boy? Well, THAT was an understatement. HE is HER property. We’ve all learned that playfully swatting at The Boy is a big NO NO. Yep, the skin around her mouth recedes, those sharp teeth come out, and a vicious bark and snarl is her ONLY warning. Trust me, you back up fast. And she stands down.
When The Boy crawls into bed each night (he’s fourteen, five-foot-eleven, a hundred and ninety pounds), she jumps right up into bed with him. His bedroom is at the end of the hall, and the bed is situated in such a way that The Dog can see anything coming The Boy’s way as she keeps herself positioned at the foot of the bed. She dangles her paws off the edge and just sits there looking.
The thing is, once The Boy is actually IN the bed, you can’t go into his room. The doorway is as far as you’ll get. It’s become a nightly ritual with all of us to see just what this dog will do when we try to enter The Boy’s room. While we do this, The Boy props himself up on his pillows like a king, hands behind his head, and just cackles as we try to fool the dog into letting us into The Boy’s realm.
Last night I got a hot dog from the fridge to bribe the dog with. A grown woman stood in the bedroom doorway wiggling a weenie (get your mind out of the gutter, people), saying, “Hey, sweetie. Don’t ya want a nice, juicy, fat-free weiner?” (get your mind out of the gutter, people).
I kept wiggling the weenie back and forth—mind out of the gutter. The Dog’s head would move from side to side, following the movement of the weenie. I took a step forward, just over the threshold. Her head stilled. I stopped. Started talking to her again. “It’s a good weenie. I know you’ll like it.” (mind on task, people). I wiggled the weenie again. Her head moved back and forth. The rest of the family was watching, snickering. I took another step.
BAM! She stood up, hair on her back raised, teeth bared, snarling—vicious. The Boy is laughing so hard he’s about to pee on himself. The rest of the family loses it. I gave up. We’ve tried everything. The Boy’s Dad even decided one night he was going in that room come Hell or high water. He came out with a dazed look on his face, hand held up in the air, and in a completely bewildered voice said, “She bit me. That damn dog bit me.” Well DUH!!!!!!!!!!!!! He couldn’t say she didn’t warn him.
I’m a light sleeper. I roam the house at all hours. Guess it comes from years of living alone with three children and knowing I was their protector. Guess The Dog and I have a lot in common. The Dog hears me at night when I make my rounds. She raises her head, looks at me from The Boy’s bed. I speak to her most nights, and she lays her head back down once she realizes it’s just me. It’s kind of comforting to know the dog is so vigilante. Even if her mean streak is a PITA. I do feel a bit easier at night knowing I’m not the only one listening, watching.
The Boy is up now. It’s time for school. The Dog has switched beds. She’s with one of his sisters now. She’ll let me go into that room. But I better not reach out to touch the sister. LOL The Dog is still on guard. Yep, no “off” moves are allowed on her watch.
Wishing everyone a great Monday and a productive week!