“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself,” Josh Billings.
(Boomer fills in for Nancy E. today.)
I’ve been in this house for a season now. I’ve gotten to know them–he and she–the two humans who live here with me.
They take care of me. And I take care of them.
I alert them every day when some men enter the territory. Well, nearly every day. Five days in a row, then they take a couple off. They’re as regular as clockwork.
They pretend to be building something behind the house across the street, But I know they’re just waiting for a chance to come in and steal the TV.
A couple weeks ago, he was gone for a few days. She let me sleep on the bed with her.
When he came home, he was very tired, so we slept on the bed for a few hours. Then, I had to wake him up. It took some work. But I finally got him up by dancing on his chest. Those guys across the street pretended that their truck was stuck in the mud. There was this gigantic tow truck in OUR DRIVEWAY! I went nuts!
He got up and looked. That scared them away.
TV still here.
And one day, I encountered the guy who comes six days a week to the house. He’s some kind of stalker. Just hangs out for a minute at the little metal box they attached to the porch. Completely creepy.
Anyway, she and I were out walking and this stalker guy was walking the other way. I played it cool until he passed us. Then I lunged! Another six inches and he would have had a hole in his pants. He still stalks us. Maybe someday I’ll get another chance.
Let him be aware. I am watching.
Then there was the BIG adventure. He said he had this pipe in the basement plugged up so nothing could crawl into the house. But this particular creature of the rodent variety gave it a go. I found it under the stove, and when he lifted the stove, that thing jumped right into my mouth. It surprised me so much I dropped it. But I was quicker than it was and made short work of it.
It was all over before she realized what the horrible racket was all about. Good thing, too.
He called me “Killer” a couple times. But, shucks, I was just doing my job.
He figured out which pipe was the problem pretty fast, and he told her what he would need to buy the next day to fix the problem. She told him Lowe’s wasn’t closing for 15 more minutes. He had plenty of time to fix that problem that day.
And that is exactly what happened.
They were so happy with me. They invited me up on the bed that night. I stayed there a bit. But it was crowded so I went to my own bed.
I’m not really different from who I was when I arrived. But she has changed some.
I overheard a conversation she had with a neighbor. She said she had never understood the “dog people” before. But now she does.
The neighbor misses the dog who used to live there. Gone a few months now. She is sad for the neighbor. I taught her that, she said.
We don’t always understand each other. But they’ve caught on to my cues about when I need to go out. We have a nice routine. We are flexible about it when we need to be.
They’ve learned where I like to walk–to sniff, to leave my own scent around the territory. They see that my territory goes beyond what they consider theirs. Yet, they set boundaries. I can’t pee on these light up devices other neighbors have in their yards.
They haven’t been up all year. Just recently. Seem fine for depositing my scent. But they say no.
I comply. Reluctantly.
For some time, they didn’t understand why I would get up on the bed and lie on his spot right before he got in at night. He was away again last night. So I crawled onto her spot. I waited there for awhile as she got ready to sleep.
(Takes them forever! Three circles and I’m set!)
But that’s when she understood.
She saw I was warming it up for her. Welcoming her to her own place. To her rest time on a cold night.
She is more now because I am here.